As we approach the Fall, here are some tips for your congregation. We are in what I consider STORM conditions. I think most of you will benefit from a "Get everyone in lifeboats ASAP!!!" approach -- this means small groups, prioritizing and promoting group life, and helping newcomers bypass all barriers between them and face-to-face community experiences (online and onsite).
Jump to video YouTube video chapters using time code links below or in YouTube video description.
(0:40) Training Preview
(1:00) Digital is here to stay
(2:30) Hour long online worship not a viable first step
(5:00) Prioritize lifeboats = small groups!
(6:26) Expect group-LESS people to drift away
(7:20) Designing a viable congregation
(8:30) Different types of groups
(10:20) Connecting worship and group life
(12:25) If you have declining membership
(13:18) Use video to communicate and connect
(14:20) Engaging with video now essential skill
(15:00) Digital is a primary context of...
The following is the replay from my March 24, 2022, live strategy session discussing the following question:
"Changes in US society and culture seem to have made organized religion less relevant to our population. How can churches change how they "do church" to make them more relevant?"
What should congregations do in response to the decline of organized religion? My short answer: Change HOW you organize!
Today's culture demands new approaches to how you lead, design, and facilitate congregational life.
Here are the 5 shifts I discuss in this video:
Shift 1: Where people spend their time and attention.
Shift 2: How people learn, research, and make decisions.
Shift 3: What online visitors need from congregations.
Shift 4: What people want from their leaders.
Shift 5: How people want their communities to be led.
The good news is that these cultural shifts are all things that congregations can adapt to. If you have the desire, smartphones, and internet access, you...
How do you design messages for online services that are engaging for children, families, and people of all ages? This question comes from a colleague in a congregational setting.
In the video below, I share how I approach designing messages focused on sharing a specific teaching, insight, or life lesson.
This draws on my experience working with preschoolers through elders, working as a producer and educator on nationally syndicated children's television shows, and coaching leaders on video & digital strategy.
This is ROUND 1 in response to my colleague's question. Do you have follow-up questions?
I'm collecting follow-up questions in the video comments and via my online questions box form. After I collect questions, I'll do a follow-up video.
If video won't play, watch it on YouTube here. I'm having trouble with Firefox for some reason. Thx! Peter (1/27/22)
1) My face is smushed up against a BRULE BARRIER. Yes, t
I reached out to Tara with that idea and she loved it. So we
UPDATE: Here's the replay!
After nearly 20 years, I'm officially retiring from my work with children's television production!
For the last two decades, while growing my training and coaching practice, I worked as a producer and educator on multiple nationally syndicated PBS Kids shows and web series produced by GBH in Boston.
Here are the shows I had the pleasure of producing live-action activity segments for:
So, why retire from such amazing work? Two primary reasons.
For congregations to thrive in today's digitally oriented world, it is important to understand how DIGITAL MINISTRY differs from SOCIAL MEDIA and MARKETING.
The digital ministry shift is a move from using social media solely to promote ministry opportunities to actually doing ministry on social media.
Yes, we need to promote and market events. That's true. But to harness the power of social media we need to go further!
In this episode, I share a concrete example related to educating and orienting newcomers. That's right... How to move your welcoming and membership ministry online using social!
Watch or listen below.
Listen to this episode via my podcast:
You may play it below or click the icons (left to right) to subscribe, download, embed, or share this episode.
Think about all the different social media platforms we have. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter. Video posting platforms,...
Is your congregation considering new tech staffing? This is for you! Please share this with any congregation you know who is in discernment on this issue.
Here's the question I keep getting, often when the process is far along and jobs are being threatened....
Peter, should we downsize our existing program staff and invest in a full-time tech person?
Quick Answer: No! In my professional opinion that's a horrible idea for most congregations. Better to invest in your existing staff & volunteers, cultivate new volunteers, see how far you can go and grow together, adding tech & media skills and associated tasks to portfolios of your staff and volunteers. If there are tech tasks that you must have covered, start with temporary contracts to supplement your existing team.
Watch this for my long answer:
All congregations need to be working to develop their media and tech capacity. But this shouldn't be implemented as knee-jerk...
I'm talking with leaders about regathering their congregations this Fall. One of my recommendations? Think about it like we are RELAUNCHING our congregations. That's the kind of spirit and energy I think we need to bring to our regathering efforts.
Not just gathering again, but a full relaunch. New energy, new models, new opportunities -- new and exciting!!!
I know that's a lot. But I think that's what we need to bring people back and to welcome new members in.
This is serious business, especially with the pandemic accelerating declining attendance trends. Enough to make me put on my serious face...
But it is also incredibly exciting!
To reconnect our communities -- including outreach to newcomers -- we need more effective communication, leaders using social media and video in ways that build relationships and deploy intentional strategies to help people take their next steps in congregational life.