tcp tip #2: using mini-movies for transitions

The following is a post from The Creative Pastor, aka Kendall Conner.

TCP-Post-Mini_Movie_Transitions

“What can we do better on Sunday mornings?”

This was the question that a few of our pastoral staff members stopped and asked ourselves a couple weeks ago. For our church, we’ve found that an element of the service that we seem to consistently struggle with is transitions. It’s common for us to have a really powerful worship set, but then have an really awkward pause as we move into taking up the offering. Or when transitioning from our announcement video into a special (solo). Or this can even happen when our pastor comes up to preach. Don’t get me wrong—these aren’t show-stopping moments, but rather just an area that we feel could use a little tweaking so that our services run smoother.

When brainstorming on different ways that we could improve in this area, I came up with an idea that would not only help to smooth out any wrinkles in our transitions, but would also add to our service. By using mini-movies in between elements of our worship service, we could grab the attention of our congregation while also communicating a message that really speaks to their hearts.

Here’s a couple of examples of where you could use these videos to help with transitions:

BEFORE WORSHIP
After starting your service with a countdown video, you can play a mini-movie like Praise The Lord, My Soul to prepare your congregation to enter into worship.

PTLMS

BETWEEN SONGS
It is our typical custom to end our worship set with a slower song. Sometimes it can be a little strange as we move from an upbeat couple of songs into a slower one. Using a video like Worthy Are You can easily slow down the tempo of the room as you transition into a more intimate song.

Worthy Are You

BEFORE THE SERMON
As your worship team exits the stage and the pastor comes forth, there is a excellent opportunity to use a mini-movie that relates to the morning message. For example, if your pastor is speaking on God making all things new, you could play something like The New Has Come while everyone is moving into place. This can be a real attention-grabber that sets the tone for the sermon.

The New Has Come

BEFORE SPECIAL EVENTS
Another really practical example of using these mini-movies for a transition is playing something like Baptism: Wash Your Sins Away as your pastor and baptism participants are taking their place in the water for their big moment.

Baptism: Wash Your Sins Away

Mini-movies are an excellent addition to a service no matter where you play them. They have a way of captivating an audience and speaking to people in a way that sometimes even a pastor cannot. But you can use them to kill two birds with one stone by playing them during your times of transition. It’s likely that you only have an hour or so with your congregation as a whole each week. Because of this, you need to make the most of every moment that they are there and this is a simple way to make an impact during a time that’s normally wasted.

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Kendall Conner is the founder of TheCreativePastor.com—a blog centered around making church media simple. He is a graphic designer, video editor, and all-around media geek. He has served as the creative pastor at Pathway Church of God in Baltimore, MD since 2009.

Comments
  1. Matthew says:

    At the church that I used to work for we typically had our time of greeting (where people talk to each other for a few minutes, or, as I always called it, the “turn and greet your neighbor time”) immediately followed by announcements. When we had a video to play during announcements (about once a month) I would typically suggest a “Cold Open” meaning you open the announcement section by showing a video with no explanation. Of course this doesn’t always work (some videos need to be set up), but showing it right out of the time of greeting usually proved to be a great way to transition from one thing to another.

    Matthew

  2. Stephen says:

    Thanks for sharing, Matthew! We’d love to hear how others use mini-movies as transitions as well!

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