There are various quotes about how the acquirement of knowledge is useless without the complement of action and application. Regardless of where those quotes came from, the concept is an important aspect of any professional development, especially for today's demanding church tech and production fields.
Realizing this, the advisory council of the Worship Facilities Conference and Expo (WFX) made certain combining knowledge with application was central to the 2015 conference's Tech Team Education Learning Module. The result is a sizable collection of educational sessions exploring and explaining the technical gear and practices that every church utilizes.
"If you want exposure and training on new equipment for your team, this is the place to send them," says Jim Wagner, general manager of WFX and publisher of Worship Facilities magazine.
The presenting faculty includes AVL designers and integrators and seasoned tech and media arts directors from several churches. Many of the sessions will be team-taught by church staff and industry professionals, providing a valuable range of perspectives for attendees that include the nuts and bolts aspects, but also how tech roles tie into and support the missions of their home churches.
"Most tech teams have seen their own church's equipment, but they haven't had a lot of up-close exposure to what's going on elsewherein other churches or performance venues," says Wagner. "The exposure provided by these module sessions will be a catalyst for idea generation, innovation and implementation."
Multiple sessions in the broad categories of equipment, audio, video and lighting will be offered. Each individual session will cover a slightly different, or even granular area of the broader topicensuring everyone can take away practical information relevant to his or her specific church and circumstances.
For instance, in the area of audio, one session will look at the marriage of modern equipment with traditional acoustics, and another will explore the biological factors that influence in-ear monitor mixing. In the video arena, a focus will be the setting up of live-streaming systems and workflows. Other sessions will take a look the entire AVL system and explore equipment maintenance, as well as purchasing, and the designing of integrated systems for different size churches and staff-to-volunteer ratios. Content on cost-effective set design and propping, creative use of media in visual worship, and how to foster productive working relationships between worship artists and technicians is also on the menu.
"Overall, the range of experience brought by the faculty coupled with the sheer variety of educational options will make for a really high-quality, high-value learning experience for the men and women working behind the scenes in our churches week after week," says Wagner.
In addition to following the learning module, church tech team members have the opportunity to attend the first-ever Visual Worship Workshop. The workshop is a 5-hour session that examines how to implement more visual media into the worship experience.
"In a world that increasingly prefers to consume information visually, there's an urgent need for churches to learn how to deliver sermons and other information in some sort of visual format," says Wagner.
WFX will be held November 18-19 in Nashville. Learn more about the conference, the Tech Team Education Learning Module and the Visual Worship Workshop at www.WFXweb.com.