Multi-Site: Coming in and out of the video feed
Leading a campus for a multi-site church creates unique and interesting challenges that can be overlooked. If you are leading that uses a video for the message, I have found that the transition in to and out of the video (whether it is live or recorded) is absolutely critical. You can lose the entire room if you fumble the transition from the video back to live in the room.
Transitioning in to the video is easier because there is anticipation of what is coming. We tend to place a comment that the “teaching will start in just a few moments, why don’t you greet those around you or refresh your coffee” and then start the feed accordingly. On you way into the teaching (video) don’t mention that it’s video – it’s a teaching time! More challenging is the transition OUT of the message. Here are some of the ways we try to “bring it in the room” after the video feed in a smooth way:
View the message prior to showing it to your campus – We have Saturday night services and the campus leaders attend the Saturday night service to know how the message will flow and how post service prayer time transitions. We don’t require campuses to do the same prayer topics at the end of service, however knowing what the live campus does helps prepare. Never show a video you haven’t watched previously.
Consider similar props – If the message uses props, consider if having a similar prop at the end of the message. One of our teachings was on a cup and the lead pastor had a coffee cup that was referenced multiple times. When I saw this on Saturday night I noted to bring a similar cup in and reference it at the end of the video message.
Be prepared for the transition back to the room. When the video feed ends whoever is teaching tries to use the same language to note the end of the teaching. For us it is something like “we are going to transition into a time of prayer”. When this happens the campus leader is prepared to step quickly into the main view of the room. There isn’t a large pause or awkward gap – be ready to transition smoothly by sitting close and being prepared to MOVE when the transition happens.
Deliver a “bring it in the room” wrap up – The campus leaders then, with props if relevant, deliver a short “bringing it in the room” wrap-up. This usually is what the campus leader heard, how that relates personally and a lead in to what they are going to pray for. We aren’t changing the message, only highlighting the premise of the message and how it relates to the campus leader and what it might mean for the campus. It serves to make it relevant in the context and provides a smooth landing coming out of video and also provides a lead to prayer time at the end of service.
If you have multiple services follow the Holy Spirit – Don’t get locked in to what you did in one service thinking it will be the same the next. It could be, but be open to what Holy Spirit is doing and be open to changing appropriately.
Take authority in the room – You are the shepherd of the flock in front of you!
Thanks to Pastor Matt Poorman, Campus Pastor Vineyard Mishawaka for additional suggestions.