I recently returned from a filming trip to Greece.
If you’re wondering, YES! it was amazing.
We followed the 2nd missionary journey of Paul and filmed intro videos for sermons in an upcoming series.
But, this post isn’t about the incredible archeological sites we visited or history at all.
Actually, this post is about technology and how technology can promote engagement in your church.
A few interesting interactions and experiences I had while in Greece illustrated to me how important technology is for our churches.
So, here are 4 ways technology can promote engagement in your church.
1. Online Giving
Now, I’m not trying to brag or anything, but I donated to my church while I was in Greece.
It’s true, in the midst of the crazy travel schedule, the eight-hour time change and the constant work of memorizing filming scripts, I gave to my church.
Now, before you applaud, I should be honest.
I didn’t remember to give.
I didn’t mail a check across the Atlantic.
It just happened.
You see, I have reoccurring giving set up through our church’s website.
I didn’t have to try to remember to give. It was automatic.
There was a season of my life when I was a far less consistent in my giving—not because I didn’t want to be consistent but because my consistency was tied to my actual presence in a church service and on me actually remembering to bring a check.
Online giving has been a huge gift to me and also our church.
It enables me to give consistently, which is something most of us want.
And, it has helped stabilize giving in our church through the summer months when many people are traveling, like I was traveling in Greece.
All I’m trying to say is that the technology of online giving can help promote engagement in your church.
If you haven’t yet fully optimized online giving in your church, Breeze can help with that.
2. Remote Attendance
You should know, I wasn’t traveling alone in Greece.
I was with our senior pastor, a guide, and also a member of our video team.
At one point, we were driving and our video guy announced that he was going to check out the sermon from our weekend service.
He was interested in the series our guest speaker was preaching through.
So, he connected with our church’s livestreaming service through his phone and “attended” a service 5,000 miles away.
In the past, I wasn’t sure that livestreaming services would be a good idea.
Will people just be lazy?
Will we inadvertently steal attenders from other churches who need to be plugged into a local community?
Research is showing us is that livestreaming is a huge gift to our people.
Most of our people want to attend every week, but sick kids, vacation, and work travel gets in the way.
Livestreaming is a way for our people to stay engaged.
We recently surveyed our online audience and discovered that something like 90% of the people who were tuned in on a given weekend were our own people, who are already plugged into our church who happened to be home or traveling that weekend.
Livestreaming and posting our sermons to our website enable our people to stay engaged and stay with us more often. I think this is another way that technology can promote engagement in your church
If you’re interested in exploring the possibility of livestreaming your services, I found this post to be helpful.
3. Social Media
Yesterday, was my first full day home after Greece. I stopped by the grocery store with my daughter to pick up supplies for dinner.
If you’re wondering, the highlight was grilled corn on the cob.
While I was cruising the aisles of our local grocery store, someone stopped me and said, “Welcome home!”
I was like...are you a spy?!?
Then I remembered that our church had been periodically posting our traveling adventures in Greece to our Instagram.
Our social media accounts enabled people from our church to stay engaged with two of their pastors in Greece and also generate excitement for our upcoming series on the 2nd missionary journey of Paul.
All I’m saying is that a well-run social media account can really help with engagement.
If you don’t have a Facebook or Instagram account, consider giving it a shot.
4. Facebook Live
Speaking of social media, next week we have a special event on Facebook Live that I believe will generate a lot of engagement.
The guest speaker I mentioned earlier is a specialist on world religions and apologetics.
I will be hosting an event with him on Facebook Live where our people can text in questions and he’ll answer them.
We’ve done this sort of thing in the past but it was a live event.
We didn’t have time or space for something like this during the regular weekend services and we weren’t interested in putting on another big event that would require another night of work for our staff, so we decided to go digital.
In my experience, an event like this counts just as much as an in-person event at one of our campuses.
In some respect it counts more.
Here’s my point: Technology can enable your church to do more at less cost.
It can drive engagement and it can help further the conversation.
Doing extra or supplementary events on something like Facebook Live or YouTube can be a great idea.
Well, there you go: Things I learned about technology while visiting some of the most ancient sites in the world.
I hope this has been helpful. If you have questions or ideas, let’s keep the conversation going in the comments.