Many of the Churches we encounter everyday are very forward thinking when it comes to technology and the Internet. They have user-friendly websites, lots of audio and video content, and maybe even an “online campus” for good measure. In reality, I think these types of Churches are actually in the minority. I’ve been to so many Churches that are trying to incorporate technology into their services, but just simply aren’t able to do it effectively for a number of different reasons. I want to explore why this may be the case, and why Churches are often the last groups to incorporate new technologies.
I think this is one of the biggest hindrances to any Church being able to expand their reach, not only technologically, but in every other aspect as well. Many Churches today are struggling just to pay the bills, so how and why would they buy the latest digital sound console, or pay to have their website rebuilt by a professional? Unfortunately in today’s economic times, these are the kinds of choices many Churches are faced with. I know because I’ve experienced this first hand in my Church. There are times when we desperately need to upgrade equipment, but we simply can’t do it because there are other more pressing things that require money.
In many cases, Churches simply don’t have anyone who knows how to implement or operate the latest technology. In some ways, this situation can be even worse than the first. Imagine your Church spends quite a bit of money on new equipment, and then realizes that no one knows how to use it. This in turn could lead to the spending of more money to bring in outside companies or individuals for training. This scenario is obviously no fault of the Church’s, or anyone else, but it is a situation that many run into, which in turn causes them to be overly-cautious in updating in the future.
3. “Powers That Be”
This is another case that I’ve experienced personally. The “powers that be,” or in other words, the people who make decisions about how the Church should spend its money, don’t necessarily agree with the ideas and initiatives put forward. While a new piece of equipment may be needed, they don’t understand the need, or at least don’t want to understand the need. This situation is difficult to overcome, and takes humility and patience.
These are just a few of the reasons I’ve experienced in Churches that seem to be behind the times when it comes to technology. I don’t have all the answers, and in many cases, the answers to these situations could be very different depending on your Church. I’m sure there are many other reasons, and I’d love to hear some of the ones you’re struggling with in the comments. If you have any suggestions on how to best handle these, I’d love to hear those as well.