Week after week pastors around the world spend countless hours reading, studying, praying, and writing. They do it for the sake of the Gospel in hopes of speaking life changing truths to their congregations and any visitors that walk through their church doors. What they have to say is not only valuable, it’s vital. If you’re at church, you have the privilege of benefiting from the hard work that goes into preparing and delivering a sermon. But is one delivery enough?
Why It’s Important to Record Sermons
- Be connected even if you’re absent: People miss church for a variety of reasons. Gathering together as a church body is essential; but, if that’s not an option, being able to listen to the sermon during your commute or while working at home is powerful. Not only will those that missed the sermon feel more connected, but they will be able to jump right back in next week.
- Listen again and go deeper: Even if you were in attendance for the sermon, it’s possible that you didn’t absorb everything. Babies cry, minds wander, and sometimes the message is so deep that listening once is not enough. By recording each sermon, you’re giving each member of your church the opportunity to go further into understanding the message of a sermon.
- Spread the Word: A recorded sermon is a great way to help spread the Gospel. Will something your pastor recently preached resonate with a friend in need? Recorded sermons become a tool for sending a friend an encouraging message or perhaps a message discussing something your small group is studying.
- Draw people in: Your online presence often acts as the front door to your church. More people than ever before are using the web to find a church. Recorded sermons give visitors a glimpse into your church.
- Find what you need when you need it: You vaguely remember when your pastor preached about trials. Sadly you can’t remember any of the passages he mentioned and you lost your bulletin with scribbled notes. By archiving sermon audios, you’re giving each of your congregants to search and find sermon messages as they need to.
How to Get Started
Recording and publishing sermons requires extra software, sometimes extra computers or equipment and certainly time. Someone has to start and stop the recording, save the file, edit the audio and finally upload the sermon to the web. This can take hours; but, more often than not, it’s days before the weekend message is published to the web.
Getting Audio to Your Computer
- Built-in microphone: Probably the least desired method, but if you have no choice, use the microphone that you already have on your computer. You may have to adjust the input gain depending on how close you are to the source of the recording.
- Line-in: The most common way to record audio is to simply take a cable from one of the outputs on your soundboard and run it into your computer. Professional cables will be ¼ inch while inputs on your computer will likely be ⅛ inch so you might need a special cable or converter.
- External soundcard: This is probably the best way to record sermons. If you’re using a higher-end computer, there’s no need for an external soundcard but most on-board soundcards are not designed for recording and can result in poor quality audio. Even something like this, or this, is much better than most stock soundcards. If your church has a digital mixer, you already have an external soundcard! Simply connect the the mixer to your computer usually via USB or Firewire, and set the mixer as your input device.
Once everything is connected don’t forget to do a demo recording to set levels and troubleshoot in case something isn’t working right!
Proclaim Church Presentation Software is the easiest way to start recording and sharing sermons. Let me tell you why.
Proclaim recently released a brand new feature that allows you to record sermons right from the program. You don’t need to have another application running to record the sermon—you don’t even need to do anything to start the recording. Everything happens automatically. Watch the video below to see how it works:
[Video via YouTube]
Setting up Proclaim to record the sermon is as easy as setting up a starting and ending cue right in the Order of Service. This means the recording starts and ends automatically as you advance through your slides. This ensures that recordings start and end on time. No more forgetting to start the recording!
When your service is over, you can publish your sermon audio and presentation instantly. Trim any unwanted audio right from within the application and then upload the sermon to your church Faithlife group, share it on social channels, or send it to iTunes. You can even embed to a widget on your church website which automatically updates to show the latest sermon. And here’s the best part: the sermon you just shared is more than just audio. It’s audio that is synced up with the slides from the presentation! Your pastor invests time to make slides each week, don’t let them just end up in the recycle bin.
If you’re wondering how sermons are hosted, the answer is SoundFaith. SoundFaith (currently in beta) offers the functionality for storing and sharing your published sermons. In the future, it will be a searchable sermon archive, aggregating content from Proclaim, Logos Bible Software, and other sources. Here’s what a sermon presentation, with audio, looks like on SoundFaith.
How Can I Try It?
You can get started using Proclaim, free for 30-days. You’ll be able to record, edit, publish, and share sermons instantly. You’ll also get access to the entire media library full of sermon art, still motion backgrounds, and mini-movies.