I would like to take this opportunity to thank you, church family, for your wonderful expression of appreciation and support this past Sunday. It has been my pleasure to serve on the Audio-Visual Committee for about 20 years now, and I have really enjoyed being a part of this ministry. God has blessed me by allowing me to serve Him in this exciting ministry and by giving me the ability to do what I do, so all of the glory is His.
Heather and I became members of Poplar Springs about 21 years ago. We were newly married and searching for a church home where we could rear our family, grow in our relationship with God, and plug into His kingdom work.
Not long after joining PSBC, I began to serve on the Audio-Visual Committee. Louis Fisher was running the sound at the time and the church office distributed cassette tapes to our homebound members. One of my first tasks was trying to figure out why the choir could not hear Pastor Jim Richardson in their monitor speakers. One Wednesday night, while wiggling a few wires, I terrified the choir when I found the loose wire and speakers loudly came to life!
Fast forward 20 or so years later… now our church has a website full of church information, song words, scripture, and videos appear on the screen, and not only audio but live and archived video of our services are available on our website and Facebook as well as on TV via Roku, Apple TV, and Amazon FireTV. Live video can be streamed to any part of the church and just recently, we have started podcasting the weekly services on iTunes and Google Podcast.
Over the past year, videos of our church services as well as a couple of funerals have collectively streamed over the internet tens of thousands of times with views in at least 29 states and 3 countries. During the COVID pandemic, streaming video has been the only way we could meet as a church and, for some family members and friends, to attend their loved one’s funerals. Many members of other churches have been watching our services and I would like to think many folks that don’t have church homes are watching as well. On average, we currently have about 600 views per week of our Sunday service alone and have had over 1000 views per week on a few occasions.
Over the past 8 months or so, video streaming has become essential to our lives. When I suggested the idea of streaming to the church staff one day over lunch, and later to the deacons and church council, none of us could have ever imagined a few short months later that we wouldn’t be able to physically meet together for worship. However, God knew and I feel he was leading us in the video streaming direction for such a time as this. I think Pastor David Jeremiah of Shadow Mountain Community Church put it best when he said something to the effect of: “God had to close down the church to really open up the church.” God doesn’t need four walls to house His church. The AV ministry has allowed us to reach far more people than we could eve hope to fit in our building. We are also reaching people around the country that we would not otherwise have contact with.
In closing, I would like to say that none of this could have been possible without a lot of people doing a lot of things behind the scenes in the AV ministry at PSBC. First is my family, Heather, Eymilyn, and Ransome who have supported me over these years. Not only have they sacrificed a lot for me to have time to work in the AV Ministry, they occasionally fill in at church when we’re short- handed. On Sunday mornings, Pat Litton, Kaleb Harmon, Luke Reynolds, Logan Canipe, and Eymilyn Poston keep things sounding and looking great. Floyd Queen fills in as needed running the sound system. Jolene Litton has been essential in keeping our website and on-screen announcements updated. Joey Bridges and Holli Helms have also done extensive work on our website. Still, there are others like Aaron Edwards, Jimmy Queen, Doug Francis, Adam Hamrick, Billy Asis, and Josh Hamrick that have spent many hours in the building running wires and hanging lights and cameras. Randy McBride and Doug Francis keep us informed as to what the choir is hearing. And, I can’t say enough about the church ministry staff, both past and present. Andy, Katherine, Nicole, Clyde, and others have been awesome to work with, have encouraged me and have even treated me like and honorary staff member along the way.
Thank you, church family, for your words of encouragement and financial support of the AV ministry and for allowing me a place to plug into what God is doing through PSBC. God has blessed this ministry greatly and has grown it exponentially. I am so happy to be a small part of a much greater plan.
God Bless you all, Gerry
Proverbs 16:3 “Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and he will establish your plans.”