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Why Your Church Should Podcast

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Horray! We're back from our 2 month hiatus and ready to rock some socks off. While we were gone, we did a bunch of stuff, but one of the things we did was teach some sessions at a worship conference. This conference has inspired two new aspects of the G&G Podcast...

The first way we were inspired was to do another podcasting series. When talking about podcasting, we saw what a hunger there is for good, solid, knowledge in the church community. So, today's podcast, we start by talking all about why your church should podcast. And, we really focus on how us geeks can convince our pastors and leaders that a solid church podcast is really worth the time and energy.

We were also inspired to dream up and start work on creating The Geeks and God Web 2.0 Conference. The planning is now officially underway for this conference which will be held in the Summer of 2008. Jump over to the conference survey and tell us what you want in a web 2.0 conference from G&G.

We're back and we're psyched....welcome to a new season of G&G.

A little more on IRC

If you're not an IRC person check this out. It might help you get going.

http://mattfarina.com/2007/10/01/drupal-churches-irc

Matt Farina
Geeks and God Co-Host
www.mattfarina.com

Matt Farina
Geeks and God Former Co-Host
www.mattfarina.com

good discussion - podcast is part of larger change

Any smart theology movement needs to get and stay engaged with digital media communications. Podcasting is just one of the most recent aspects of this communications revolution.

Community formation and theological development is an extremely communications dependent activity. The digital media revolution will pretty clearly become (some would say is) the biggest change in communication since print. In the long run it will certainly dwarf the impacts of traditional recording and broadcast.

The printing press was essential for the Reformation and pretty revolutionary in the change it visited on organized religion and its participants.

Digital media does much more to break down the time, distance, media access and participation barriers. It makes it easier for all to participate in dialog, develop and express ownership in the communities, and share expressions of thought and spiritual experience. I thinks that's mostly great, but some will regard this with more apprehension than hope.

But regardless your opinion regarding the impact of such change, it is happening, and will transform large portions of society and its institutions. Those who don't participate and adapt, will have to struggle to minimize the damage done. Those able to adapt well, or at least better than others, will find it a blessing. But it will require change and discomfort in adapting.

Example Downside/Upside....

I've found some great venues for audio and video sermons... which I sometimes prefer to some of what is created in my local religious community....

Upside: It broadens my religious community and broadens thought and the discussions within my church so that it extends beyond what originates within or is sponsored by my local congregation.
Downside: The church has to compete for quality and relevance .... and perhaps adapt to focusing more on areas where it can be most effective and most relevant in serving local membership.

I know this isn't a "big impact" yet. But most people are pretty habitual and doctrinaire in their practices, so it will take a while. But I'm pretty sure I will see it start reshaping these institutions in the next decade or three (should I survive here that long).

Mark

a few thoughts on podcasting...

Just a few thoughts on our experiences at Rocky River Community Church:

We podcast our weekly life messages. Although we use Drupal, we decided to use libsyn.com for podcast hosting. We can keep all of our past audio up. You can also store flv (flash video) on libsyn which opens us up for future video podcasts. They have really nice stats too. Right now we just link to the blog tool at libsyn.. I would like to see the Audio module in Drupal allow linking to externally hosted mp3z. I know that is a bug request for the module. If have updates on that MF, let us know.

Last year, we started a building campaign. As a part of that campaign we recorded daily devotion podcasts. They were written by our lead pastor and I did the VO.

I find that I listen to our message podcasts when I miss a Sunday service. That is how I personally utilize this tool. I know there are some at home who can't physically get out who listen too.

Thanks,
Shrop

Mark Shropshire "shrop"
Geeks & God Forums Moderator
http://geeksandgod.com/users/shrop

audio module and linking url

Version 2 of the audio module is in development and it's big bonus is the use of an outside service, like libsyn.com, to store your audio files.

This is a long standing request and the issue is at http://drupal.org/node/47998. Earlier this summer a chipin page was setup to collect money to pay for this. All the money was collected so now we wait for drewish to do the work.

Personally, I hope he gets this done soon so we can start to port the audio module to drupal 6. Since this will fundamentally change some of the audio module this change really needs to go in first.

Matt Farina
Geeks and God Co-Host
www.mattfarina.com

Matt Farina
Geeks and God Former Co-Host
www.mattfarina.com

Matt - it's great to hear

Matt - it's great to hear that v2 of the audio module will support remote media.

While we're not podcasting yet at our church, it won't be long 'till it's implemented. I recently signed our church up for the free nonprofit webhosting service at dreamhost. From my testing, they're not all that stable, so I plan to use the storage space there as a "media farm" for the church website. The main church website and xml podcast feed will continue to be hosted on a more robust, reliable service, but it'll pull the mp3s from dreamhost.

That's the idea, anyway :-)

--
Erik Anderson
http://andersonfam.org

--
Erik Anderson
http://andersonfam.org

Just signed up...

Hey guys, I just signed up to your podcast and I've realized that it's exactly what I've been looking for. You have answers to a lot of questions that I've had. I'm the worship leader for my church, but the job description doesn't stop there, as is often the case in any ministry. I also edit and post the sermon to our website, I do some of our graphic design, etc.
We've been working on improving our sermon audio and recordings, and getting a podcast started. A lot of that entails stuff I've never done before, so it's all new to me. But I'm a fast learner, and always eager to improve, and you guys have just added to the improvement process! Thanks.
I'm sure I'll be asking questions in the future.

-Stewart
Calvary Chapel of Crook County
http://www.calvarycrookcounty.com

Welcome

Welcome to the show and forums. If you have questions, please, ask away.

Matt Farina
Geeks and God Co-Host
www.mattfarina.com

Matt Farina
Geeks and God Former Co-Host
www.mattfarina.com

Podcasting andd Outreach

Thanks for a great Podcast
I would like to make a comment or two if I may. First, I don't see Sermons working as outreach - at least in Australia. Sermons are, by and large, aimed at building up the Christian Community not at reaching the unsaved.
Remember Matthew 28, Saved (baptism) then teaching.

My second comment is why not design two podcasts: - the first a straight recording of the Pastor's sermons for shut-ins etc. The second for outreach purposes: - testimonies, interviews, musical items, comments on community events, and so the list could go on. This is most likely to cause the unbeliever to come and check your church out. This podcast could end with a boilerplate invitation from the Pastor to do just that. The latter would require someone in the congregation to lead a small team of people with a heart for the lost and the imagination to put content together.

I don't think you can do the two at once unless your pastor's sermons are especially evangelistic in nature, which most times they probably ain't.

All the best. I'm really looking forward to the rest of the
series.

Jumping ahead of us

Jumping a little ahead of us, eh. The next episode is all about those sermon podcasts and we are going to talk about that outreach angle. I think a lot of people think that sermons online are outreach.

Matt Farina
Geeks and God Co-Host
www.mattfarina.com

Matt Farina
Geeks and God Former Co-Host
www.mattfarina.com

Bingo!

As Matt already pointed out, we 100% agree and are going to talk about this in future episodes (one already recorded). I just wanted to throw my weight behind this idea, since I believe it's exactly right....

Thanks for speaking up Bert! (and welcome to the forums)

-Rob Feature
Geeks and God Co-Host
www.mustardseedmedia.com

-Rob Feature
Geeks and God Co-Host
www.mustardseedmedia.com

Nice to hear you guys back.

Nice to hear you guys back. Enjoyed this episode. It is hard to explain to people sometimes about the importance of having a podcast in ministries. A lot of older pastors especially have a hard time getting it. This is a good episode to share with those out there that fall in that category.
Sermon podcasts are an easy transition for a church to do simply because in most churches the sermons are recorded anyway. The audio is there. The rest is all pretty easy.

Thanks again for the episode and good to have you back.

Sermon Recording (repost)

Hey guys,

Our church is currently trying to determine if we should upgrade our
soundbooth computer with a new sound card and more memory, and get the
church secretary a new but less expensive pc, or if we should buy a new
soundbooth computer with a better sound card, and give the old one to our
secretary. She doesn't care either way, but we want to be able to begin
getting better audio recordings.
The other option is to move my new Dell that I'm writing to you on, into
the sound booth, move the soundbooth computer into the secretary's office,
and get a new Mac for my office, since I will be doing a lot more media
production and editing and it might be wiser to go with something a little
more stable. I'm personally a PC guy who has converted to Macs, and loves
them, but I try to keep proficient in both realms.

I'm currently edited our sermon audio on my PC in Audition 2.0, then
uploaded it to our website. But our recording seems like it's always
sketchy at best. My usual workflow consists of opening the sermon>
boosting the levels with the Hard Limiter (which I've heard good and bad
things about)> sampling a spot where there is nothing but hum and buzz and
removing it with the noise reducer> then putting an intro and outtro into
it, saving it as a WMA and uploading it to the site. But the quality is
rarely ever pleasing to me.
What can I do?
I know that was probably the longest, most incoherent question ever, but
hopefully you guys have your decoder rings and you can fire back some
answers.

Blessings,
Stewart
http://www.calvarycrookcounty.com

Another option

Another options is to not use a computer to do the recording but a cd burner designed to record this stuff. Sure, you have to take the CD, rip it to computer, and do your stuff to it. It might be an extra step. But, isn't that easier for someone operating it during the service than to mess with a computer? Wouldn't that open up options on who could do the recording? Just a thought.

What kind of setup do you have to get the audio out of the board? Is it coming out on an AUX channel? Do you have compressors or another other equipment in the loop?

WMA? Why WMA? That's one of the much lower widely used formats. Why not MP3? Or, if you want an enhanced one MP4/ACC?

Matt Farina
Geeks and God Co-Host
www.mattfarina.com

Matt Farina
Geeks and God Former Co-Host
www.mattfarina.com

Relative links v. Absolute links

Hey guys - love your stuff and use the feeds on my site, but some (a lot, in this article) of your links (the internal links) are relative links and when they display on another site, they go nowhere!

absolute links

Good catch. Since those links are going out in the feed they could be absolute url. I updated them to be that way.

Thanks,

Matt Farina
Geeks and God Co-Host
www.innovatingtomorrow.net
www.mattfarina.com

Matt Farina
Geeks and God Former Co-Host
www.mattfarina.com