This has been a unique season of ministry, and I mean that positively. It’s not very often that you have the opportunity to look back and actually be encouraged by what you’ve been through and done. It’s also not very often that you can peek into the future excited and expectant for what lies ahead.
As for what lies ahead, it’s hard not to think about the building – especially since I’ve been pretty immersed in the process with the design team representing the Audio, Visual and Lighting (AVL) side of things. In this update I’d like to share a couple things we’ve been working on behind the scenes.
Maximizing the Budget
As you might be able to guess, technology is really expensive – especially at this level, but just like anyone else, we still have to share and operate within a budget. This has been, both, a challenging and a fun obstacle to overcome. What’s made it “fun” is not having to face these obstacles alone. The Cornwell’s and Ryan Carlin have offered a lot of wisdom and insight to inform me and the Building Vision Team on how to be good stewards and make the most of what we’ve been given.
We have also been able to work with a great production company called LiveSpace. LiveSpace will be installing our AVL systems. They have a lot of experience working with churches and understand their budgets, the demand for excellence and the need to stretch every dollar. I feel very encouraged by our team and how we’ve worked together to be good stewards of what God has given us.
New, Improved, Improving
We will have a brand new sound system in the new building that will feature a line array speaker system! What this means is that the speakers in the auditorium will have multiple speakers that will disperse the sound evenly throughout the room. At John Wood, we use two large speakers and subs to cover the room. While our team has worked hard to produce the best possible sound, this set up causes the sound to be uneven throughout the room causing “hot spots“ (which are louder, concentrated areas of sound) within the room. With the new line array speaker system we will be able to have a more consistent and balanced quality of sound throughout the room. We are very excited about this and our Multipurpose Room, where LifePoint Kids will mostly meet and worship. This room will also feature a complete sound system to support additional ministry needs.
Another Audio feature that we’re looking forward to is a distributed audio system throughout the building with up to 7 different zones. With this we will be able to broadcast any combination of music or feed from the service throughout the building to these zones. PLUS, one of those zones will feed to a private room for nursing mothers! We believe this will play a big role in our hospitality.
The visual aspect of AVL is a pretty broad category, but this would include screens, graphics and video.
The Auditorium will have two projected screens: one pointing towards the stage and one pointing towards the back wall (opposite of the stage). Initially we thought we would have multiple stage screens, but LiveSpace concluded from their research that having multiple stage screens would not be beneficial for the size of our room – and we trust them. 😁
The back wall screen will serve as a “confidence monitor” for our singers and communicators. This screen will include song lyrics, cues and sermon notes. This will be a great support for the people on stage in making a greater connection with the congregation.
Outside of the auditorium, there will be a number of screens strategically located throughout the building. Some will serve as “way-finding,” some will serve as announcement hubs and *some will have video feeds from the auditorium (*this is feature is still in discussion). The Multipurpose Room will also be furnished with two large TV’s to meet the needs of worship and presentations.
Our lighting system will be modest and pretty similar to what we’ve grown used to at John Wood. One of the main things we wanted to make sure we got right is that our lighting would be suitable for video.
Lighting will be a new and added responsibility for our Technical Support team because John Wood runs the lighting in our services for us currently. If you’re interested in getting involved, we’ll have a spot for you! Contact me (email@example.com) for more information.
I still remember last summer when all of this was new and we could only imagine what our new home would be like. It was fun to dream and brainstorm all the ways we could use this building for ministry. It was fun to visit other churches Dave had built and imagine ourselves in a similar place. Since then, being on the Building Vision Team has painted a clearer reality for those dreams.
Is this new building everything we ever dreamed it would be? No. Will it have theater seating and individual rooms for everyones specific ministries? No, in fact, the staff won’t even have their own offices! Is it still going to be good? YES!
This new building is going to be very different from our dreams and even from some of our expectations, but what I’m learning from all of this experience is how this facility is becoming a better container for some of our deepest values. This house will facilitate more opportunities for people to encounter God. This place will foster community for all generations more often. This building will equip so many more souls in their pursuit of Christ. And this center will enlist so many more people to go to the ends of the earth to proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ to all peoples.
The best thing we can do together as we anticipate our new home at 39th & Harrison is not to put our hope in how this building will meet our expectations, but in how we can anticipate what God will do as we meet His. THAT, to me, is exciting.