I have been involved in many discussions about media and the church. Most of these conversations center around the use of media in worship. While worship is the central communal aspect of the church, the conversation about how technology can be used to enhance the ministries and mission of the church needs to go beyond the sanctuary. Note that I said “enhance the ministries and mission of the church” and that I did not say “replace the ministries and mission of the church.” No technological advancement will ever be able to replace the need for the touch or presence of another human being.
That being said, what are some ways that technology can be used outside of the sanctuary:
1. Document Sharing. A lot of committe time can be consumed by sitting around a table reading documents and then editing the document just read. Save people’s time by posting the document online where it can be read and edited by the group before the group meets. This would be great for by-laws, budgets, or even the weekly bulletin.
2. Web Cams. Most computers come equipped with a webcam today and the software is now user friendly as well. Members of committees wouldn’t have to leave their own home if the committee meetings were held via the webcam. Another option would be to have members of the committee who couldn’t meet the group in person chime in via their webcam.
3. Text Messaging. Why not send daily or weekly devotionals to church members using text messaging. There are many services now that allow an individual to send numerous text messages at the same time. Wouldn’t it be great if congregants could get messges on their cellphone
4. Twitter. Twitter describes itself as a service that lets others know “What are you doing?” Aren’t churches constantly trying to get information out about what is going on at church. Why not use Twitter to remind congregants of activities, programs, and ministries that are happening at the church.
These are only a few of the ways that technology can be used by the church. What are some of the ways that you or your congregation use technology?