Extreme Church Makeover: Tech Edition

As church techs, it’s easy to get fixated on the things we don’t have. As we all seem to have some perfectionistic tendencies, it’s all too common to look past all the great stuff we have in our own buildings and see only the things we don’t have. Or maybe we have them, but we don’t like them. For me, it’s a PA; our speakers aren’t bad per se, but they are the wrong boxes for the room and they’re hung improperly, resulting in very uneven coverage and significantly less fidelity than I would like. And then there’s the mix position...

I’ve found the best cure for that ill-fitting perspective is to get out and see what others have to put up with. As our parents used to remind us when we were kids, there is always someone worse off than you.

Recently, I was introduced to a church down the coast that is making an incredible impact on a community of people who have been disenfranchised by most churches. A relatively young church plant, they meet in a historic theater. To say their A/V/L situation is less than ideal is being generous. Mismatched speakers are stacked on the lip of the stage; an old sound board mixes only two monitor wedges (also mismatched); the lighting is fluorescent work lights; and I’ve seen brighter projectors in small boardrooms. Clearly, they need some help.

And this fall, the SoCal chapter of Church Tech Leaders is planning on giving them some. For some time, it’s been on the hearts of a few of us to do what we’re calling an Extreme Church Makeover, and this seems like the perfect beta test. A few of us will run point, meeting with the church, dreaming a little bit, and we’ll develop a plan. 

That plan will come with an equipment list, of course, and the first place we’re going to look is in our own closets. Most of us have extra amps, mic’s, cables, speakers, processors and lights laying around that we’re not using. So we’ll build an initial inventory first. After that, we’re going to approach some manufacturers for donations. Once we have all the gear lined up, we’ll all head down there for a day or two of installation. 

I believe this will be a catalyzing event for the tech community in Southern California. Great bonds are built when a project is completed together, and this is a very worthy cause. It’s also a great example of local churches being the Church. And how cool is it that a bunch of churches are coming together to help another church—led not by the outreach departments or executive pastors, but by the tech teams?

Pray for us as we undertake this adventure. We’ll need God’s provision for equipment and the time to get it installed. We’re planning on documenting and covering this event extensively, so if you represent a manufacturer who could get on board, please contact me. You’ll get to be part of a great cause, with a tax deduction and lots of publicity. Send someone down to help and you’ll be rubbing shoulders with the top tech directors in SoCal. 

Personally, I can’t wait to see this unfold. God is doing something amazing in our tribe of church techs, and it is a privilege to be part of it. For more information, contact me at mike@churchtecharts.org.

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