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PODCAST 027: CITN & the Community and Camaraderie of Ministry

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Working on a Church Staff has been one of the greatest joys and greatest burdens in my life. Confession: I spent many years on staff feeling alone and frustrated. While I was friends with the people I worked with, my ideas in ministry really separated me from those around me. I just thought differently. I’m not saying I’m right or they’re wrong. Fact here is, it’s a lonely place to think different than everyone else around you.

Then, I met guys like Matt, Jason and Jason from the Church IT Network. Guys who thought like I thought, who were asking the same questions that I was asking and struggling to communicate to leadership like I was. I quickly realized I wasn’t alone in ministry.


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ON THE SHOW

Guest: Jason Powell
Granger Community Church
Twitter // Facebook // Instagram // LinkedIn

Guest: Matt Pugh
McLean Bible Church
Twitter // Facebook // LinkedIn

Guest: Jason Lee
Northwoods Community Church
Twitter // Facebook // LinkedIn

Host: Jeff Reed
THECHURCH.DIGITAL
Twitter // Facebook // Instagram // LinkedIn

SHOW NOTES

HELP ANOTHER CHURCH. LEAVE A REVIEW.

We know these conversations are out there are hard. Even the best of churches haven't figured out... If this podcast is helping you and your church work through what Church Online is, then help us impact other churches! Take a moment and leave us a brief review!
 
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Feedback on the podcast is vital as well. Leave comments on the podcast, or comment on this post! I'd love to know your thoughts and how we can serve your church better.
 
Love you all! Praying for your Churches and your Ministry Online.
 
Jeff Reed
THECHURCH.DIGITAL
 

TRANSCRIPT

Jeff Reed: 00:00 The Church Digital Podcast is it's going to be a little different than what you're used to. We're not bringing in one guy to have a conversation with. We're not bringing into, we're actually bringing in three different people and have a conversation. And on top of that, there it guys like, I don't know if you spend much time hanging out with it guys, but I'll just tell you up front, they're a little weird. You get jokes like this. Why is beef stew a horrible password? Why is beef stew it horrible password? Because it's not strong enough. Yeah. Weird. How does a computer get drunk? Don't, don't think about that one. It takes screenshots. The computer screenshots here, you start to see how bad it is. Why do we not call an iPhone charger? Apple juice. Okay. No, I actually think that's legitimate. But these are it guy.

Jeff Reed: 00:49 Humor jokes and, and if you hang on it guys long enough, you start to discover, at least I do in my life, they're a little weird. Okay. They're really, really weird. So we've got three it guys coming into this conversation today. At the church, digital, Jason Powell who has a very awesome title that he will share with you from Granger church. Another it guy coming in. Matt Pugh from McLean Bible Church, a huge church over on the east coast. And then also Jason Lee, who's with Northwoods up, up and center. And these guys have been doing ministry for a long time. These guys have been doing church it in church technology for a long time. Bringing these guys together. I gotta tell you I wanted to have a conversation about camaraderie and community. But honestly the thing that I learned the most about was relationships and the value and the necessity of relationships. So while you might not be the it guy and you may like, I me think that it guys are a little weird because they are, there's a lot that you can learn from three it guys talking about camaraderie and community in context of ministry. Everybody, here you go. Hey a Jason Powell. Cause we've got a couple of Jason's in the conversation here man. Just take a minute to tell me a little bit about yourself and, and Kinda how you got wrapped up in this church thing.

Jason Powell: 02:13 Sure. my name's Jason Powell. I'm the tech OPS director at Granger community church. This is my 16th year at this position. Prior to that I was the it director for a large school system in northern Indiana. And prior to that I was a high school accelerated and advanced placement teachers. So quite an interesting journey to get into the church world. The short story is my best friend in college became the youth pastor at Granger community church. And out of the blue one day called me up and said, hey, we've got an opening for an it guy and I think you should be it. And the next thing I know praying

Matt Pugh: 03:00 And God is doing amazing God things and we're moving from Wisconsin to Indiana and you know, 16 years later, like it's still kind of amazing to go, yeah, this, this is where we're at and you know it. Yeah. Just really, really fun. And,

Jeff Reed: 03:19 And then we got Matt jump jumping on as well. Now, Matt, you've not been 16 years, right? Is, is Jason the, the veteran here?

Matt Pugh: 03:26 Oh, he's definitely, he's definitely got a s probably out numbered several, several years. But you know, I've been, I've been doing, doing it in the church world for probably coming on 10 years no win just different capacities from just managing a chms for our church here to working at fellowship one for four and a half years to coming back as the it director here at McLean Bible church. Just outside of Washington DC.

Jeff Reed: 03:58 What's the greatest story you can share quickly outside of working at, at McLean? So F1 fellowship one gimme something there.

Matt Pugh: 04:07 Greatest story of good grief. There's lots of stories of that I wouldn't say are necessarily it related or job related of, being on site with different churches. A friend of a coworker of mine and I were at doing it, implementation at a church, Atlanta. And we happened to drive down to where they were filming the walking dead and we were, walking around the town and you could see the wall was like was a, the wall was up. And so they were filming that day and you can see the lights on the other side of the wall and everything. But since we're completely out of town people, no one knows who we are. So we would walk into this restaurant and you could tell everybody in the room was kinda staring at us wondering if we were actors, mbie. You were just out of, o of makeup for something and cause we're both bald headed guys tall. Like it was, i was pretty funny cause you got a lot of strange looks while we were in there just trying to get some dinner. So that's probably one of the funniest experiences that I've had. Just, you know, traveled around doing church consulting.

Jeff Reed: 05:21 That's, that's awesome. I was, I was hoping to hear you say you were going to be like in episode four of season six or something like that. But, but no such luck. There are other random Zombie looking people, but not, not you, you, you didn't make that cut. No def love to talk to your casting agent for that. And then thirdly we've got Jason Lee on. And so Jason, you know those Zombie stories I'm sure for you, but give us a little bit of a, your background.

Jason Lee: 05:48 Yeah. So I'm, I'm the online campus pastor, an it director at Northwoods church and Peoria, Illinois. Been here just over 13 years, but doing church it since oh two. So I might've squeaked in there just a little bit longer than a pal or Matt. But my story is a little unique in that, arly on in our time as true tighty network, I was one of the few guys who wore the hat as a pastoral role in addition to be a technologist. And so, you know, from the very beginning of my time in ministry, I knew that I had been called to do ministry, but I knew I did not want to do, t's say student ministry or things like that where all the, you know, all of my colleagues went, do youth ministry internships out of, out of college.

Jason Lee: 06:39 And then I, you know, I, that was not my thing. And so just knew that God had kind of gifted me a little more in the sense of a mind to use technology and to help the church and have a vision and a passion for, you know, the church using tech to achieve the vision and the goals of what our leadership wanted to achieve. And I really, that's just been a common, common camaraderie among the three of us. And especially those that are in the church I t network. It's just the kind of a, a common place where people have found likeness of like-mindedness. It just kind of, you know, a place where it feels like home where you're understood. But, you know, I, I, I love to see the church,arnessing technology to solve problems. And that's kind of been, you know, what has kept me going over the years of working in the church and just the journey that we're on. You know, and really have been part of this community, the church, I see networks since about Oh six, and just seeing it grow from just a, you know, a small handful of people to now hundreds of people who are on our sphere of influence that are contributing and adding their thoughts and perspectives to the community. It's just the

Jeff Reed: 07:51 Clinical journey. Part of what I wanted to talk about it and Gen Jason kind of eloquently set it up right there is just this idea of, of camaraderie in thatI'll, I'll be honest, like I'm sitting in the room here and virtual room here and, and Matt, you were 10 years, right? Jason Powell was 16. Jason Lee, you were, I don't remember if you said, but you're somewhere around 10 where, where you are at your church, right?

Jason Lee: 08:17 I've been here 13. Yeah.

Jeff Reed: 08:19 13 teen. Yeah. So, so tends, tends to youngest. I haven't had a ministry job longer than four years in my life. Like, and I just, if I openly confess that. OK. And, and, and at this point I've actually stepped outside of, of a full time ministry job staff, church, staff job. I am actually consulting very deeply with several churches and helping at a high level. But for me, and this is maybe this is a Jeff Reed issueI've always, when I've been in, in church staffs, I've always been the weird guy, not like the techie guy that just wants to talk about marvel cinematic all day. Although Spiderman leaving the MCU is catastrophic. And I've already talked about that in other podcasts. I don't need to go there now, but it's, it's been the, I think, different than everybody else in the entire church.

Jeff Reed: 09:08 I've oftentimes, I've had conversations with, with, here was a spiritual development pastor at a church that I worked at and, and did pastor, he asked me, so it's like, do you consider yourself a pastor? And I said, I don't know. How do you define a pastor? And he said, well, I defined the pastor as the biblical, you know, and started reading it to me. And I was like, yeah, I consider myself a pastor if that's the thing. And then they, then he's like, well, why do you do so much with the tech? And I was like, because I can be pastoral and Techie at the same time. Can't die. But that's, that's this, this weird balance where a lot of times in church you've got the, this, the pastors and the, and the, and the, the techie people that, that aren't considered pastors in that, in that part.

Jeff Reed: 09:55 I've spent years alone, I've spent years frustrated, feel like this is confession. Now I'm going to start balling. I've got Kleenex is over here. But I've just, there had been years that I felt alone. Yeah. Thank you. Jason's got some for me. I, I where I've spent years alone, I've said this four times now because there weren't people like me. The church that I was at didn't have a lot of budget for conferences. I just, I didn't know how to connect with people who were thinking like me. And there were questions that I needed answered that I didn't have the answers to. And just to be completely honest, I didn't know who to talk to, to get those answers. And then it was was funny, like this is just pure testimony for me. A couple of years ago I went to a church conference church tech conference and my brain exploded because I was surrounded by people who thought the same things I was thinking, who struggled with the same questions that I was struggling with and, and who were wanting to have conversations with it.

Jeff Reed: 10:52 And all of a sudden I found myself surrounded with this idea of, hey, there's camaraderie there. There are people like this out there. I'm not alone and not being alone really validated who I, who I was. At least to me, it gave me confidence to say, Hey, I don't have the answer to this question, but neither do 25 other churches and at least 24 of them are trying to come up with answers. So, so we should, you know, as as well. And that's why I love and all you guys with, with the cit n I, and this is what I really wanted to park on is what is camaraderie look like and what are some stories either from yourself or, or others, because as, as a, as churches out there and as listeners are out there, yeah, there are podcasts, there are ways to, that we can resource in different ways. But even through conferences and through the network that you're doing, you're, you're helping churches come up with answers to questions and you're encouraging these people that, that need encouragement. So, you know, from a practical standpoint, cit in what, what do you guys actually

Jason Powell: 11:54 Doing to help solve these problems?

Jason Lee: 11:57 Well, I think one of the things that our community has brought to each other is this is like, you've talked about this, is that longevity and survivability. There's only for so long that you can go into a ministry and go off of your experience and go off of what you've done in the past. And that starts to run out at a few years into it. AndI think the big piece of what we do as a community is people are coming in our slack channel or in our forum and saying, HeyI just came back from this meeting. I've been tasked with this. I'm supposed to solve this problem and I need to do it in the next 24 hours. And then suddenly there's a community of people who are offering solutions and pro, you know, all sorts of solutions to the problems that some of them are duct tape and bailing wire type solutions.

Jason Lee: 12:45 But if the collaboration of, like you said, were like-minded and like thinking people who many live, eat and breathe technology but also have a passion for the church moving forward. And so trying to solve those problems using technology. I think that that's one of the things for me. I don't think I could have been in the role that I've been in for the last 10, 13 years without the community around me to just say, oh my gosh, I have no idea how to go about solving that problem. Or I can't believe they have somebody just asked me to, to come back with this solution in that short of a time period. And yet the community rallies around one another and says, Hey, I've solved that problem before this way. Or have you thought of, you know, doing it differently or, and just that kind of camaraderie and partnership and you know, honestly the, the leadership team of church it network is become some of my closest compadres and in ministry.

Jason Lee: 13:38 And you know, we bounce things off of each other in a smaller segment of our community of just, how would you solve this problem? Or, man, can you believe this person said this? Or, you know, whatever it might be. And there's honest conversations of yes, I couldn't believe they said that cause they were right and you're wrong or no, I can't believe they said that because that's totally crazy. Right. There's, there's that honesty, give and take. And I think you know, it's no different than the church being the church to one another. I mean, in any aspect of what we do, it's all about we want people in community. Right. And so this is community for technologists and the church.

Jason Powell: 14:12 Jeff, I think you, you hit it on the head kind of the thing that's been in my mind, in my heart since kind of getting into church it. Oh, initially, like I didn't know anybody else in church. It. so I felt like I was all alone. I was the, you know, only hire here. And you know, it felt like, you know, a prompting from God kept saying, you know what, what might God do if a bunch of likeminded individuals got together and talked, you know, just what's going on,

Matt Pugh: 14:52 You know, what questions do you have? What, what failures have you experienced so that I don't run into them again? And that's really what started the church. It network was that, that's the idea. If we could get a bunch of likeminded individuals in the same room, man, what would God do with that? You know, a lot of it is just sharing successes and failures, you know, hey, or getting ready to do a project on voice integration, you know, well, good grief, don't do it this way. Cause we tried this and we, you know, spent so much time and energy and resources and it was a complete fail. Or even just connecting into partners of the church it network that provide, you know, not only hardware and software services, but just their expertise. So it's really cool that the church it network is both, staff and volunteers and we've got some amazing partners that have come alongside us and understand like the mission, vision and values of the church it network. And hey help foster that and promote it. So,

Jeff Reed: 16:15 Well, you know, let's, you know, thank you for that. But let's make it a little practical here. So like what I, I'm a, I'm an it guy. I'm a new church online guy. I'm a social media person. I deal with technology all day long. Maybe I'm I'm starting to come into some production ab stuff and it's, or it's a mixed role. How can church it network? How can you guys help me?

Matt Pugh: 16:43 Oh, I th I think it comes down to just the, the, the extent of the resources that of, of the individuals that are involved. And the, the sharing of those little golden nuggets of information. A lot of times, I don't know how many times I've been in a room where someone in the room is just casually talking about something and says like that one little thing that they just assumed everybody else knew and everybody else in the room goes, wait, wait, what did you just say? Like re rewind that out. Let, let's what? And it's like this, like it just reveals so much to the people that are in, that are just in communication and just in, in, in the room together too, that really furthers their church. Cause now they've learned this one little thing that was insanely valuable that they didn't even know they, that they needed to know.

Matt Pugh: 17:35 And it's those conversations and those interactions that really that really drive this community. You, it's the things that you have no idea are going to happen. Are the things that create the biggest impact, big churches, small churches, who really gets involved with you guys? Everyone. I mean, it's a wide array of a different size. Churches from the, the one the one guy it shop to the churches to have it departments have five, six, seven, eight, 10 people. Yeah, I mean every week. I mean we even got some nonprofits that send people every once in awhile. And then we've, I mean we got, you know, the partners as well. There's a lot of partner involvement, not just from a standpoint of, hey, let me be kind of a sponsor of your national or regional events, but let me just be a part of this community. Because they learn just as much information as they are able to share into the network. So it's, it's beneficial to kind of everyone that's involved.

Jason Lee: 18:47 I think that's one of the things for our community is that it's an expectation that everybody's a contributor and everybody's a learner. Somebody has something to give that somebody can learn from and they, there's always people that you can learn from. And we always tell people, if you come to our conference or our one day regional events or you're part of the community and you're not getting your questions answered, we'll shame on you. But the same size side of it is, yeah, when you, when you participate your teaching and offering something at the same way, we laugh that often times, you know, some of the larger mega churches will have a solution or have a problem. And if some of the churches that are much smaller that will have these amazing solutions that are so incredibly cost effective because that's out of necessity, they've had to figure out how to solve some of these problems.

Jason Lee: 19:36 And so we laugh at some of these, it would appear to be bailing wire and duct tape type solutions, but they're genius and they cost nothing. And then everyone in the community steals the idea because it's virtually free versus you know, someone might be looking at a multi thousand dollar type solution and then, you know, somebody hops up and said, well, have you ever thought of this? Have you seen such and such a website? And it's like, oh, I didn't even know that free thing existed. And so that's where I think it doesn't matter the size of your church or the years of experience that you've had in the church space, you've got something to offer as somebody who is a technologist to our community. And that's what's so exciting is some of the solutions that come up with, like, I would have never thought of that on my own.

Jason Lee: 20:17 And May I, you know, and the expectation is I'm going to steal it, make it better, and then bring it back. You know, and that is just something we communicate all the time is, and that's what I love about what, you know, how Jason has started this as a collaboration of community, of collaboration in that, you know, your, your responsibility is to take this idea, take it home, make it 10 times better, and then bring it back and let someone else then learn from it and glean from it. And that's just the expectation of thou shalt steal ideas, only ideas but you know, within our community.

Jason Powell: 20:48 Yep. Absolutely. And so, quick fun story. At the very first event, we had churches ranging from attendance of 200 up to over 20,000. And it was amazing thatTerry Chapman, who was the it director at Fellowship Bible, you know, ed Young's church, like one of the smaller churches he mentioned something about script logic and printing and they just couldn't figure it out. And one of the smaller churches had a solution for him and it blew his mind because I distinctly remember him saying you know, he, you know, basically I came here not expecting much and I'm going to go home with a solution that I don't know that we would have ever figured out. And so it was just affirmation that man, everybody's a learner and everybody can present. And you know, so pure learning, community inspiration had been like the, the three pillars that we've landed on and a built on over the years.

Jason Powell: 21:57 And it's, it's just part of who we are. So it doesn't matter if you know, your new spring, new spring brings a bunch of guys to the conference and Gals, or if you're a one man it shop, or maybe you're just the volunteer in your church and you've got a way to, you know, get the Kansas City this fall. Man, we, we would love to have you. And I guarantee, no matter where you're at on the learning spectr there is something for you, not only vocationally, but also spiritually. And we're gonna feed you a whole bunch of food and you're gonna, you're gonna, your belly is going to be full. So we'll fill your heart, soul and mind.

Jeff Reed: 22:38 So yeah, great set up on, on, on the conference, heart, soul and mind. That's, those are three high standards, man. Belly would be, you know, maybe the asterisk for four, but well done. What areas does, cause I it in church tech, like those are very broad scoping areas. What do you guys look into a track?

Jason Lee: 23:01 If you grew up playing the game Oregon trail, then you should come.

Jeff Reed: 23:07 All right, so that's an inside joke even I don't get, so I'll have a little worried.

Jason Lee: 23:13 You have to come to the conference to understand it,

Jason Powell: 23:17 But we got everything. We've got leadership workshops, we've got online ministry workshops, we've got, you know some sequel workshops. If you're kind of a more of a developer type person. Honestly we've got, you know, lots of different it type tracks for say like office three 65 or hey, what's new? The world of Wi-fi. We put panels together with not only partner experts, but church experts. So, you know, we'll have a panel with somebody that's on staff at a church and maybe a partner and they can present together on a particular solution or whatever. Last year a new spring did a great couple of workshops on how they're utilizing Muraki. I'm from, you know, the highest level of networking down to, you know, their switches and now they've gone all Google. And so it's just a place for, you know, there's about something for everyone.

Jason Powell: 24:28 We've even got the church management solution providers there. And so, you know, maybe you're, you know, you wear multiple hats, you know, I have to keep track of the database, I've got to make sure that Wifi works. I've got to figure out what the heck is Dante and how does that interact with, you know, the, the world of it. And everything's got an IP address for the, you know, the audio video team. And maybe I'm also trying to figure out how do I lead up to my boss and, and I'm in charge of the online church and I got to figure out how to stream and help people, you know, find Jesus through an online medium.

Jeff Reed: 25:10 Yeah, that's a lot. The tech help, the camaraderie, the hey, I need help finding the solution. That's, that's one thing and all that. That's awesome. The thing that you just told me that I'm like every person who works in tech and church and America needs is that phrase of leading up is you know how to, so I have this vision, this will help the church. This will help reach people. I have to sell it to like leadership who has no idea any of the language or the acronyms or the talk that I'm saying. You know, the lead pastor still has an AOL email address like that, that, that, that type of thing. So, hey, you know what, cause cause I'm, I'm serious like the listening audience, you know, this listening audience is there. I drop, drop me a nugget, give me, give me one thing, help, help me here. My lead pastor still has an AOL email address and I need to convince to him that I, I need some sort of, of of a tech upgrade thing. What's, how do I get started on that road?

Jason Lee: 26:11 You buy a ticket to church it network conference for 85 bucks and you have a full belly. And then everybody there, we'll brainstorm ideas on how to solve that problem.

Jeff Reed: 26:22 Come on. Not One freebie. You're good. You're going to hold up for the conference. That's, that's fine. They're there. They're all shaking their head no.

Jason Lee: 26:30 A relationship man. It's you know, that's the thing about what we do is it's so easy to think that technology solves every problem and it's all about the relationships with your colleagues, with your senior leadership. It's in them relationally in order to have the conversation of, Bro, let me just tell you honestly, having an AOL address, it's not giving you any credibility. It's not helping you out. What can we do to give you something that has some, some respectability, you know, and, and AOL email address them maybe in 1980 that was cool, but maybe not now. And I said, but you only can have that conversation when you've invested in that relationship. And so it's all about building those relationships so that you can have those conversations. Just this last week had a conversation with our senior leadership and just talking about where we're going with online ministry and around the table.

Jason Lee: 27:22 There were very diff, differing perspective that we didn't agree to disagree, but we all hurt each other out and appreciated what each person brought to the table. And that only happens because of the relationship and the investment that you have in those people that are around that table, that are outside of the four walls of their offices. It's not because I came and fixed your computer, you're not going to believe me when I say this is a trend or this is something that's going on or something that maybe we're missing. You can only have those types of conversations because the investment relationally. And I think that, you know, I'm better at that because I've seen my colleagues in the community do that and I'm a, you know, so it's really, it's a give and take of how we as a community have learned.

Jason Lee: 28:02 It's not a matter of sitting down and saying, just because I have the title of it director and I've been doing this for 13 years, that you have to listen to me. That's not it at all. It's how have I invested in our leadership and built aa legacy is probably the wrong word, but how have I invested in over time and built credibility among what we do? And I think that's where we have to rely on that is that you can't even start to have those conversations about don't do it that way until you have invested and have the credibility and the relationship that supports that in order to be able to speak into it and say, okay, let's have an honest, transparent conversation. And then, yeah, your AOL address is probably one of them.

Jason Powell: 28:40 Well. And another thing that's been super huge for me is I bring my boss, my boss is the CFO, if you will, the finance director. And so it's been really helpful for him to come to the conferences for the past three years, I believe. One because it, you know, relationally we get to spend time you know, just, you know, Kinda doing life after the conference, you know, hanging out just, just that personal time to hang out with each other. And as is at the conference, you know, he's going to various workshops and every year he comes back with kind of some eyes wide open. He's like, wow, you know, I was just in a workshop on, you know virtual online ministry and you know, my mind was blown. I don't even, you know, understand how to wrap my brain around it.

Jason Powell: 29:39 And it gives us kind of some both of us handles to be able to talk about stuff and or you know, he sat in on a a budgeting workshop for it and he's like, you know, it just helps open his mind to what we you know, direct reports are doing behind the scenes and it's just really helpful. You know, you got the awesome relationship building aspects of it cause we do have a lot of fun with the conference as well. But you know, you also get them able to maybe learn some stuff about your environment that they you never thought about before.

Jeff Reed: 30:17 So I mean really the relationships swings two ways cause cause at this point you're, you're connecting with other churches but there's an also another opportunity to, to bring in leadership, to have them experience maybe some of the same things you are, but then use that as common language to build towards something. So a, you're a CFO, experienced something in, in church, online and online ministry. And so you want to have a, a common language to talk about. Okay. The conference said this, what would it take to do that here? Maybe this works better, but at least now you're in the, in the same, like the same ballpark. You're, you're, you're having the same conversation. You're on the same road. You know, I've, I've, it's just testimony and I've used told this story before on the podcast. I've, I've been in sessions with church staff where basically I'm at the end of the dock and ready to jump into the water and there's not a soul within 500 yards of me.

Jeff Reed: 31:12 You know, and while I'm, you know, turning around and asking leadership for advanced high level decisions, because I've been doing the church online for a long time, the leadership was that much more of a elementary, basic level because I had been running completely on my own and hadn't brought leadership with me through, through the processes. So the more that leadership can experience that, obviously the better it'll, it'll be for you guys. So a lot of our listeners are church online. And so, cause we, we obviously we do focus a lot on church online and online ministry and that, that sort of thing. Transparently I've been working with the it and developing his, coming to the online tracks and some things like that. And I know Jason, you're, you're involved in that, but what are some things, hat we can expect in the church online realm specifically? Like what does that look like at the conference?

Jason Lee: 32:08 Well, I think you, you know, the, the, the cool thing of how our conference have has evolved as it, you know, it used to be conversations about buying storage and network switches. And that was the extent of it. You know, I mean everybody talked about over and over again and you know what sand you're going to buy, what you're, what networking infrastructure you're going to have. And it's interesting how the conversations have changed from that to a much different conversation. And that's where we felt like the online ministry really dovetailed into what we're doing from a core IP perspective. You know not only does core Ito, but also encompassing the online ministry aspect of it. It's also the church management data side of it. And how do we keep tabs on people and care for them and reach out to them without good systems and processes.

Jason Lee: 32:56 So online ministry dovetails in with that as well. And, and even now, just the convergence of it, core it andAVL everything it seems in our production venues now wants to plug in to at least one, if not two networks at the same time. And so how do we build those relationships across those teams? So when we have those conversations, we are talking with common language and I think that's the big piece. I mean, we even have our, our communications team is bringing two people this year and there's really no vertical or track within our conference for that. But because of their heavy involvement in what we do online, it giving them perspective in language as well to how do we as an online team interacts with our communications team? How does their online team interact with our AVL team? How does our online team interact with our core ITR, our database team?

Jason Lee: 33:49 And it really is that, you know, there are few places I think you can go to have those types of conversations where there's the overlap of technology, but also then the camaraderie and the synergy that of, of moving that forward. And I'm super excited about some of the workshops that we're planning that are just kind of stretching the envelope and helping people to think about, you know, 2010, 2013 online ministry was, was basically stream your services. But is that what digital ministry or online ministry is in 2019? Probably very different. And so how are churches evolving through that? How might someone you know, take their church through that transition? How do you help your leadership process? What's different? The trends that we're seeing, you know, so I think there's a lot of it that you know, the questions that we're all asking and it's just to be able to get into the room and in here you're not alone. And then go back with a plan of here's some things that I think I'm gonna steal from somebody else or questions I'm going to go home and ask and hopefully get some answers on.

Jeff Reed: 34:49 That's awesome. I'll tell you one of the breakouts that I'm writing and this is new new content to me. I've, I've never done it, but it's, it's a breakout that's designed at a conversations with, with all of you, the listeners and people online of church online as perceived to a wrestle to challenge, to take away from the physical church. We're seeing physical attendance at the physical campuses, drop virtual attendance, digital tension's online is skyrocketing. So therefore, you know, let's shut down the online church. So people will go back to physical. And there is, it's 2019, may or may not actually work that way, but let's dive into, okay, how can we set up church online and develop a strategy for it so that it compliments what's happening at the physical instead of threatening it. A lot of times the perceived weaknesses of church online isn't the, isn't a weakness.

Jeff Reed: 35:45 It's actually a strength. We just may need to look at it from a different perspective. And so the, the, the goal for Latin, it's called phygital. It's a merging of physical and digital into, into the single environment. And so how church online can do that so that church online can be a strength for the physical campuses so that digital can be a strength for the physical campuses instead of something that's taboo and an obstacle that that's ignored. I can tell you that that's one thing that I'm going to be digging into. One of the breakouts that I'm teaching and I'm looking forward to meeting and, and collaborating and sharing and, and, and all that with, with everybody at the conference. So when is the, I mean, we've been talking about it. I don't know that we slapped dates on it. So when's the conference? How do I sign up? What's the cost? Give, give me the, the bullets on that.

Matt Pugh: 36:31 Oh, the conference will be October20 20th through the 23rd. 20Th is a kind of a meet and greet. 21St is when the conference technically starts in the morning. It's going to be about a 85 bucks to register and that provides for you all of your meals while the conferences going on, swag, fun, entertainment, inside jokes. Just a, just a really, really good time to connect with your peers and people that are struggling with the same things you're struggling with. It's gonna be in Kansas City at church. I always get it wrong. Church of the Resurrection. And yeahI don't know if you need anymore information, it's pretty simple. Go to churchitnetwork.com and you can find out more information to get registered.

Jeff Reed: 37:27 Awesome. So check out the website, we'll link it in the show notes as well as generic and from a general information about the conference and we'll go from there. Well, hey, this has been great. Thanks for the time. More information on, on church it network, check out the show notes and we'll hopefully see you all out there. It's going to be a, a great experience on the online ministry church online site, but also just general it network database programming. There's leadership development working with like, there was just so much in that thread. Jason Powell. I don't know how y'all keep it straight, but well done. Well done. Doing it. So gentlemen, any last thoughts while we're landing the plane? You'll also, if you come see the world's largest stained glass window, is that a legit thing? It's a legit thing.

Jeff Reed: 38:16 It is legit. The largest stained glass window in the world. If that's up. That's an ironic thing to say for a church technology conference. Come see the world's largest thing. Glass. I mean, that's really interesting. Really cool. I knew it was big. I just didn't know it was, was like, like legit that book. So well done now. Like I'm not gonna put that in the show notes cause you don't want to see there's a web, there's whole website dedicated to this, but I'm not going to up and you're gonna have to come to the conference to see it or not. We're not gonna, we're not going to let that cat out of the bag, so hey, listen, it's been a great, great podcast. Matt, thank you for joining us. Jason, Jason squared. Jason Powell, Jason Lee, thanks for joining us today. My name is Jeff with the church digital. It's been an awesome podcast and we'll look forward to seeing you next time. Thanks for joining. Bye.

 
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About Author

Jeff Reed
Jeff Reed

With about 20 years experience serving the church in the digital/technological realm, Jeff loves working with churches. As passionate about Discipleship as he is Technology, Jeff uses his passion to help Churches develop technology systems to bring people far from God closer to him. Oh, and he loves Church Online.

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