Browse
Taking on PowerPoint

Taking on PowerPoint

Posted January 9, 2017 by Kaitlin

Imagine you are in church, singing a song that you don’t know. Thankfully, you are able to easily follow along with the lyrics that are projected on the screen at the front of the sanctuary! You find yourself pulled into the worship experience until the wrong lyrics appear on the screen. You watch as the slides jump from one to the next until the correct slide finally appears. In the meantime, you awkwardly mumble some version of a tune along with the rest of the congregation who is just as confused as you.

I have all too often experienced this situation in my home church, and other churches I have visited. As a regular attender, it is frustrating to have my focus moved away from worship. But think of how much more uncomfortable and distracting it must be for a visitor! This is why clear and consistent PowerPoint slides are essential for creating a welcoming worship service.

So, here are a few tips for using PowerPoint slides well in your church.

Keep it simple. I have been to churches where the slide backgrounds move and have visually appealing pictures. When done well, this can be a nice touch, but it isn’t necessary. If you have a new volunteer each week making and running your PowerPoint slides, the best thing to do is keep it simple. Use easy to read fonts and avoid clutter on the slides. It is also best to put dark text on a light background, so it is easy for the congregation to read. Avoid using transitions or animations. This can make the PowerPoint cheesy and it can also be a distraction.

Double check the slides. I can’t stress this point enough. Whoever creates the slides needs to double, or even triple, check their work. It should be simple for the volunteer running the slides to just push a button to go to the next slide. Volunteers shouldn’t have to worry about whether the slide is correct. Taking time to verify that the slides are right will help you avoid the errors that can jolt people out of the worship experience. I would also strongly suggest having your projection volunteer go through the slides while the worship band practices. This is another chance to spot errors and make sure the slides are in the correct order.

Learn the shortcuts and train the volunteers. Church services don’t always go according to plan. In any worship service, there may be a time when you need to go back or skip slides on the fly. It is vital to learn to use PowerPoint shortcuts so this can be done quickly and effectively. One short cut I suggest is using the presenter view. This allows you to see all the slides you have and enables you to quickly click on any slide you want to show. Train your volunteers on how to use this view and go through a couple examples with them. This will help them feel more comfortable and nimble using the PowerPoint program.

There is no way to completely error-proof a worship service. Mistakes will be made and no one expects perfection. However, as a church communicator, you know that minimizing any kind of distraction or friction in your work is an act of hospitality. So, commit to spending the time it takes to minimize distracting PowerPoint errors. Your members and visitors will never even know to thank you. And isn’t that the point?

Filed under: Branding, Visitor's Perspective, Communications, Screens, Worship Service

Don't miss a post

Join our email list

Recent Posts

Taking on PowerPoint
Taking on PowerPoint
2

Posted January 9, 2017 by Kaitlin

Here are a few tips for using PowerPoint slides well in your church.
4 Practical Questions for Crafting Effective Outreach Messaging
4 Practical Questions for Crafting Effective Outreach Messaging
0

Posted November 21, 2016 by Chris Hunt

If your church is anything like mine, its mission statement probably includes something about being a “soul winning and disciple making” church. It probably says something about putting “practical feet to the gospel” to impact your community. The question is, how do you translate that into effective outreach messaging?
Transitions + Thanks
Transitions + Thanks
4

Posted August 24, 2016 by Jerod

Changes are coming to Church Juice. Read more about staff transitions, the future of The Juicys and some parting thoughts from Jerod.
The Good and Bad of Stock Photography
The Good and Bad of Stock Photography
5

Posted July 28, 2016 by Jerod

Using stock images is a part of everyday life for designers. This post isn’t about saying “yes” or “no” to using stock photography. Instead, we want to help you think through why you’re using stock images and when you ought to avoid it.
Pokémon Go and Your Church: Finding the Rational Response
Pokémon Go and Your Church: Finding the Rational Response
1

Posted July 12, 2016 by Jerod

It’s good to be aware of Pokémon Go and its impact on your church. It's also smart to keep the bigger picture in mind when deciding how to respond to the new game.
Navigating Facebook News Feed Changes
Navigating Facebook News Feed Changes
0

Posted July 7, 2016 by Jerod

A change to the Facebook News Feed algorithm is putting posts from friends and family before those from brands. That doesn’t mean your church should give up. We have five tips for surviving this change.
Communications Project Checklist
Communications Project Checklist
1

Posted June 28, 2016 by Jerod

Having strategic focus will make the process of creating church communications easier while helping you create a more meaningful message.
Communications Takes Courage
Communications Takes Courage
2

Posted June 16, 2016 by Jerod

Communications conversations become big and far-reaching. It's more complicated than just launching a new website or revamping a logo. To stick with it means you need courage.
Free Ebook: Church Graphic Design 101
Free Ebook: Church Graphic Design 101
1

Posted May 24, 2016 by Jerod

Church communicators have to know graphic design basics. Our ebook walks you through common design projects using a free web-based program called Canva while sharing graphic design best practices.
Why Communications Plans Fail
Why Communications Plans Fail
0

Posted May 12, 2016 by Jerod

Creating the perfect church communications plan isn't easy. We've assembled some of the common pitfalls that lead to failed systems.