Get the most out of live streaming church services when you embrace cutting-edge technology.
The idea of church online, still considered innovative, has actually been around since the early 2000s. While it was not uncommon to see churches live stream their services in some form, having a church operate solely online seemed futuristic and to some, implausible even.
But once the world closed down, it became clear that churches had no choice but to lean into the online option in order to continue having services at all.
This led to a large spark in interest surrounding digital and online church communities, and how these could be a potential solution for attracting new and old churchgoers alike. With whole faith communities now building churches in virtual reality or on other digital platforms, it has become clear that the idea of church is now in transition.
But how will this transition work for the everyday church?
Why online church, anyway?
The facts are that churches have been struggling to maintain consistent attendance rates since before the pandemic even started. Research conducted in 2021 found that only 36% of millennials belonged to a church, compared to more than 50% of baby boomers today.
The data is concerning, to say the least. With fewer millennials turning to the church, it’s fair to assume that the same will be true of their offspring, Gen Z. Clearly, traditional church models are not appealing to younger generations in the same way as they are to their parents and grandparents.
And this is not the only concern churches have right now.
Technical or budgetary constraints, concerns about the validity of virtual worship, and the difficulty of introducing new software tools are just a few of the most common concerns cited by churches thinking about going online.
In other words, churches know they need to go online to appeal to the younger generation but they fear the steps needed to get there.
Introducing the hybrid church model
While many churches are wary of taking the leap into offering online services, others have already pivoted to a new model of the church: the hybrid approach.
These are churches that are offering the best of both worlds by continuing to have online services in conjunction with their in-person gatherings.
The need for an in-person connection cannot be left out of the conversation. One of the primary arguments against the move toward live streaming church services has been about how going online will cause churchgoers to become disconnected or disinterested in church.
What better argument exists for offering both online services as well as meeting in person?
Keeping the Great Commission
When Jesus gives His disciples the Great Commission in Matthew 28:18–20, he says:
“All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
We are in a technological age. The internet is how we learn, communicate, and connect. Churches ignoring this fact will find themselves left behind by those that do not.
By providing both approaches, churches ensure that they are snagging the attention of different audiences – those that prefer in-person worship and those who like the idea of sharing faith online. Suddenly, a smaller regional church can gain an international following, really making a disciple of all nations.Churches with hybrid models exhibit an understanding that we are in a technological age. The internet is how we learn, communicate, and connect. Churches ignoring this fact will find themselves left behind. Click To Tweet
How live stream platforms can help
Get the most out of live streaming by choosing a platform that can provide video conferencing software, consulting, and training specifically for churches. The right tech can serve as the virtual front door to your church, and a Zoom alternative that makes it easier for people to join and enjoy your virtual services.
With a chosen platform, it’s easy to run larger services or really narrow it down and host small groups, marriage retreats, next steps classes, and even staff meetings.
Additionally, some platforms provide access to analytics for your service live streams, allowing churches to get analytic insight into both anonymous visitors and regular attendees.
Altar Live, for example, is a live streaming platform that can be integrated with your church’s ChMS and other custom integrations. It supports live streaming or hybrid models.
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GET THE MOST OUT OF LIVE STREAMING CHURCH SERVICES AND THRIVE
Following the Great Commission, it’s our directive as believers to reach as many people as possible with the Good News. Whether that’s done in-person, online, or with a hybrid of both models, we celebrate churches getting out of their comfort zones for the sake of the Kingdom.