Technology continues to shape and influence churches. There’s no denying that claim because churches wouldn’t be where they are now without the power of tech.
From reading the scriptures on papyrus to interacting with the Bible on a digital tablet, churches have witnessed these transformations firsthand and have taken full advantage of technology
However, some churches, particularly small ones, may still feel intimidated by technology. At first, many congregations perceive it as cutting-edge, high-spectacle, and luxurious machinery.
These are all misconceptions, however. When it comes to technology, leaders and members need to see clarity and inspiration.
So, here are eight practical ways technology can help your small churches perform in ‘big’ ways. Hopefully, it will inspire your church to embrace technology as an integral part of the church experience.
1. Technology enhances your worship experience
Technology can enrich everyone’s experience at church. It’s meant to support and not replace the entire worship experience. There are several concrete examples of how technology in this context can help your small church’s worship experience:
- Digital Visual Aids- Aside from using visual aids like slideshow presentations for projecting the worship songs’ lyrics on a large screen, churches can also use these technological tools to display welcome signs, video clips, and biblical readings pertinent to the entire worship experience.
- Digital Music- If your small church doesn’t have a musical band or a choir yet, you can connect to the internet, search for appropriate songs, plug your mobile device into the speaker, and play it to the people.
Here’s a guide to help you take advantage of digital technology to enhance your church’s worship experience.
- Augmented Scripture Reading- You can help church members dive deeper into the Holy Scriptures by sharing text files containing essential notes. Some mobile devices even allow for assistive listening.
You can discover more ways to enhance your church’s worship experience by checking out How to Enhance Your church’s Worship Experience: 5 Easy Principles.
2. Technology can help you enrich your sermons
In the same vein that technology enhances the church’s worship experiences, pastors can optimize their sermons with technology. Moreover, pastors must realize that they cannot solely rely on their public speaking talents. They have to draw power from technology because these help in connecting with the audience.
Technology allows pastors to get their message across even more effectively. For instance, instead of narrating a parable, they can play a video clip of that story. To reiterate a particular verse, pastors can use a digital board while teaching the congregation.
3. Technology can connect you with each member
Let’s admit it: technology has made connecting easy for everyone. Whether you need to address the entire congregation or simply want to check on a single member, you have several options: SMS, social media, or video conferencing software.
Most of these communication tools are free or may cost very little, but the most crucial point is that you can use communications technology to maintain a healthy and constant connection within your small church.
4. Technology provides a digital avenue for your church
The potential of what technology can do for your church is endless. Today, your digital footprint is a critical support system for your church’s in-person service. Technology allows church members to ‘be in spirit’ with the church wherever they may be.
Think about the power of your church’s website, social media pages, and daily emails! It’s not just about going with the trend. Rather, this is all about making your church innovate and ready to thrive.
5. Technology keeps track of important church metrics
Church attendance, external donations, weekly tithes, and expenses are some objective indicators to keep track of the health of your church. As a church leader, you make critical decisions based on available data. So, obtaining and managing these success metrics is essential.
In its simplest form, you can collect, organize, and analyze relevant data using spreadsheets. This requires basic input of the information.
To really get a handle on the metrics that drive and sustain church success, consider using Tithe.ly’s Church App Analytics 2.0.
6. Technology can connect your church to the rest of the world
In the same way that technology connects you internally among your members, technology also has the potential to reach outside of your local community. Having this technological advantage means you can make your church known to people beyond your church’s network.
You can achieve this feat by putting up a page on social media or setting up a simple website that invites people to get to know more about your church. Hopefully, some individuals and families will get interested in your church’s story and vision and may even become church members or donors.
7. Technology extends your church’s ministries
You can’t confine your small church’s ministries within the walls of your church. The effort you put in to post a picture of your Sunday service or to upload a clip of your sermon on social media, for instance, can be the start of ‘going big.’
So, take advantage of technology’s power for your ministries by doing these low-scale but effective strategies:
- Social Media Groups- Create exclusive online groups dedicated to the church’s digital efforts of serving the congregants. These social media groups have a lot of features that you can use to interact and teach as if you were physically present.
- Digital Gallery of Recordings- Live streams of sermons and church events can be recorded and made accessible to everyone. You can upload these on your social media groups or website. With these materials, your church members can still be inspired even if it’s not a Sunday!
- Online Prayer Requests- This one is simple but meaningful. Even non-Church members can send you an email, a message on social media, or an SMS. Then, you may set a specific hour of the day when all church members pray for these particular prayer intentions.
8. Technology encourages giving to the church
Whether it’s in the form of tithes, time, or talents, church members will have to exert a certain amount of effort to perform an activity for the benefit of the church. That, in itself, is already a selfless act of giving.
Members can ‘technologically contribute’ to the online and digital efforts of the church. You can achieve this by encouraging them to give more to the church through your fundraising activities.
To see more ways how your church can encourage digital giving, or if you’d like to begin your fundraising endeavors, you can also try Tithe.ly’s Free Mobile Giving App.
Over to You
Being a ‘small church’ allows you to explore and experiment with ways on how technology can genuinely help the church. It’s clear that technology can help improve the overall church experience of each member.
Using technology at church does not mean that you’re attempting to keep up with the trend or that you’re becoming too attached to ‘worldly’ treasures.
Getting Jesus' message to the people means identifying and using appropriate tools. In today’s time, technology is a tool that has endless potential to help churches innovate and adapt to the frequently changing world. The only question that remains to be answered is, how will you use technology for the good of your church?