Dear Reformation Members and Friends,
I hope this letter finds you well, enjoying some Spring weather and anticipating upcoming longer days. I am writing this letter to inform you that Council has called a Special Congregational Meeting to be held on Zoom on Sunday, March 28, 2021, at 11:00 am to vote on the enclosed Proposal for Video Streaming Capability which is recommended by the Council. (Zoom link at bottom of page.)
The Proposal from Audiobahn is for the installation of hardware and software which will allow Reformation to livestream worship (and other events held in the Sanctuary) and to install video screens for the sanctuary. The need for this capability at Reformation has been acknowledged and researched for the past four to five years. We have been more actively working on this project since last summer when our experience with online worship due to the pandemic demonstrated how valuable it is as a ministry tool.
Our constitution requires approval at a Congregational Meeting for this expenditure. On the recommendation of the Executive Committee, Council endorsed this proposal at its March 9, 2021, meeting and voted to recommend it for congregational approval. An informational forum will be held on Zoom on Tuesday, March 23, at 7:00 pm in order provide the opportunity for questions to be answered. Click here to join that Zoom Forum.
We invite you to be part of the informational forum as well as the Special Congregational Meeting on Sunday, March 28. Please note that our constitution states that “no other business shall be transacted” at this special congregational meeting.
We are grateful for the ways in which we can continue to worship during these trying times and we are always searching for ways to continue inviting all people, serve our neighbors and build a living faith when we return to indoor worship. This important project will allow us to continue our mission.
Thank you for your continued support and prayers as we move forward with this project.
May the love of Jesus surround you!
God Bless You!
Proposal for Video Streaming Capability
This is a proposal to contract with Audiobahn to install the hardware and software required for Reformation to livestream worship (and other events held in the Sanctuary) and to install video screens for the sanctuary to be funded by the bequest from the estate of Ben Thomas.
The need for this capability at Reformation has been acknowledged and researched for the past four to five years.
We have been actively working on this project since last summer when our experience with online worship due to the pandemic demonstrated how valuable it is as a ministry tool.
The experience during the pandemic has shown the importance of being able to provide access to worship to people who cannot physically be in our worship space. This includes people who are unable to join us due to physical limitations, transportation challenges, and travel out of the area. This capability also makes it possible to reach people we would otherwise not be able to reach. We have had a significant number of “visitors” participating in our weekly online worship.
The Zoom platform has been an invaluable tool which has permitted us to worship together while being physically apart. The improvisational nature of Zoom worship does not lend itself to live streaming worship once we are gathering for worship in person unless it is augmented with the kind of capability which this proposal will provide. Livestreaming capability may make it possible for us to gather for worship in person indoors sooner than we otherwise would. A limited number of people might be able to gather in person and we could still stream the service to those we could not accommodate in person.
The experience of the past year has not only confirmed the importance of having the capability to livestream worship, it has also shown the value of having the capability of sharing images, text, and video clips on-screen as part of our worship experience.
The value of video screens in worship is well-established. They allow us to share video messages with the congregation (from national and global mission partners), they can be very helpful in providing video sermon illustrations, and, as our experience with worship on the Zoom platform has demonstrated, they make it possible to proclaim the gospel in new and creative ways.
Over the course of the past five years, we have investigated a variety of ways to overcome the unique challenges our wonderful worship space poses to the installation of video screens.
Possible solutions have ranged from $100,000 (for an LED wall) to $45,000 (for two projection screens on the chancel front wall) to $16,000 for the present proposal for two flat screen TVs suspended in the chancel plus a third one on the face of the balcony (to provide images for those on the chancel platform).
During the past eight months, we have requested proposals from several companies. We have asked for and received advice from “outside” digital video experts about those proposals. Based on their advice and our own prior experience, we have determined that this Audiobahn proposal is the best option for our situation. Please visit their website at audiobahn.net to learn more about the company.
The Audiobahn proposal for this project has a cost of $33,900. Ancillary electrical and computer costs will add several thousand dollars to the total cost of the project.
We are fortunate to be in a position to have received a bequest from the estate of Ben Thomas in the amount of $38,500. Ben was a longtime faithful member of Reformation who will be remembered by those who attended our early service as the kind gentleman who wore a bolo tie and sat in the back row. Ben was a lifelong public school teacher who retired to Maris Grove. He died in March 2020 and left a generous bequest to Reformation in his will.
Those who know Ben agree that funding this project with his bequest would be a very appropriate way to memorialize his life and faith.
Reformation Council recommends that the congregation approve this proposal and expenditure at the Special Congregational Meeting to be held on Zoom on Sunday, March 28, at 11:00 am.