Far and away the most viewed sporting event in the United States is NFL’s Super Bowl. In fact, it has virtually become an American tradition for people to throw Super Bowl parties where there friends and families get together to watch the event and cheer on their favorite team. Imagine that next year our very own Chicago Bears made it to the big game; your closest friends were all able to come and join you for a party, and the spread of food put out by the host was epic. No doubt your level of excitement for that gathering would be off the charts. But suppose there was one problem, the only TV you had to watch the game on was a very old console complete with rabbit ears. The picture was grainy. The color muted, and sound was full of static. In spite of all your building anticipation for this party, your experience would, without a doubt, be hindered.
Unfortunately, this past year’s children’s Christmas program was in some ways like the above described party. We were all excited to hear the kids say their lines and sing their songs, but because of some technological issues, the program was difficult to hear and distracting to watch. The interference and static without question distorted the message that the children were seeking to communicate. And this is by no means an isolated instance; some of issues faced in the program regularly surface in our normal weekly gatherings as well.
In light of this, at our Member’s Meeting on July 27th, we presented a project to make significant upgrades to our current A/V system. If we undertake this project, the radio station interference will be removed; the audio quality in the auditorium will be enhanced, and the video quality in the overflow seating area will be upgraded to high definition. The entire system will be installed by industry professionals who will also provide training for those serving on the technology team of our church.
The overall price of this project is approximately $12,000. Thankfully, our insurance costs for the year have turned out to be significantly less than we anticipated when we made our budget. This means that we have approximately $11,000 extra in the insurance category of our budget that we do not plan on spending for that purpose.
What we are proposing then is to designate $9,000 of these extra funds to be used for this A/V project. This leaves us with a cushion and some flexibility, and it will enable us to complete the lion’s share of this project even if no additional funds are raised. However, we do hope to raise the remaining $3,000 through gifts designated specifically for this project. In fact, we have already received $750 to that end.
Just as individuals upgrade and update technology for the sake of communication so too must the church. We believe our outdated wiring, amplifiers, and speakers hinder the clarity of our gospel proclamation and that replacing them will help us better fulfill our mission. The quality of our GATHERINGS will be increased by removing unnecessary distractions. We will be better able to focus on GROWTH by replacing the grainy picture with a clear one in the overflow area. And the gospel will be GIVEN more clearly by removing interference and static from our amplification.
Our hope in spreading the gospel is certainly not found in better audio/video technology. Ultimately we trust in the Lord. Nevertheless, we live in a world in which technology can be a useful tool for fulfilling our mission as a church. Because of this, it is our desire to wisely use technology to present the most “undistracting” message that we can within our financial means. We believe this project will help us to do just that.
Because this is a significant expenditure we need congregational approval before we move forward. We will be voting to designate $9,000 towards this project at 9:30 am on Sunday, August 10th. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to talk with one of the members of the pastoral team. We would be happy to clarify anything that we can.
We hope you will prayerfully ask the Lord to guide and provide for our church as we seek to faithfully minister the gospel for his glory.
Grace & Peace,
The Pastoral Team