Church leaders have quickly learned that technology is critical to supporting a thriving church vision for ministry to the community, especially during the coronavirus pandemic. COVID-19 has forced many churches to reevaluate their use of technology, or experiment with technology in ways that they might not have imagined before. Here’s an example of forward-thinking church leaders who had a traditional church vision, but still recognized the need for some church building updates to meet modern technological requirements.
Church of the Messiah in Westerville, Ohio
Church of the Messiah is a traditional church that wants to stay that way – making use of choir robes, pipe organ, piano, and the like in their services. Modern technology perhaps doesn’t seem to fit neatly into that vision but was still something the church leaders knew was needed. While they had installed a remote camera, which you can see in this first picture, they had wires and cables running everywhere, a lack of proper lighting for videography, and no functional platform at the front of the church building. They came to us looking for church design ideas that would keep the traditional worship feel while still making the church building more functional for worship in the modern age.
Integrating Modern Technology into a Traditional Church Design
Take a look at this second photo to see what we were able to accomplish. Obviously, those cables are now hidden away. The platform at the front of the worship space is larger and the movable chairs open up the platform while giving it more flexibility. Stronger lighting improves visibility, livestreaming, and video recording of worship services.
The biggest change is in the many video screens that have been seamlessly integrated into the traditional church design. The entire front end is now one large screen, which helps the space appear larger when projecting something simple, like this skyscape. It can also be used for multimedia, or for projecting traditional images, such as stained glass, which help to enhance the traditional aspects of their church vision for ministry.
Thinking Beyond Technology with Church Building Flexibility
Flexibility is not often a priority for church leaders with a traditional church building. However, we were able to give Church of the Messiah some flexibility in the use of this church building. For example, the first three rows of pews on the main floor of the sanctuary were replaced with chairs. This allows them to expand the front space for Christmas or Easter events, and gives them additional handicap seating as needed.
Beyond the worship space itself, we integrated wheelchair access into the church design and remodeled their foyer so that it would better meet the church’s needs and vision for ministry to their community. All this was accomplished with an eye toward blending modern technology needs with a solid, traditional feel in this church building.
We showcase church building examples like this in each of our free i3 webinars, which are designed to inform and inspire you in imagining how your existing church building can be remodeled to meet today’s church vision needs for ministry in your community. We will shortly be unveiling our 2021 lineup of church design and building webinars, so stay tuned.