The intent of this letter is to follow up on a commitment we made to keep you informed about where we are at with live streaming. Back in January of 2015 we set a goal to live stream our services campus-to-campus and over the internet by September 2015. We began researching what other churches do, consulted with multiple companies, and bought the necessary equipment. Through conversations, testing, and compounding problems from our internet providers we have concluded that live streaming campus-to-campus is not a reliable option at this time.
One of our core-values is to provide excellent weekend experiences filled with inspiring worship, relevant messages, and engaging Kids ministry. The Instant Live Streaming of the message never met our standard of excellence for an interruption free environment so in October we decided to re-evaluate. We made the wise decision to use multiple speakers and some “simulated live streaming” (pre-recorded as if live) since we were not able to do instant live streaming. Our goal was to have the option to live stream up and running by the end of January 2016.
As of early January we were on track to meet that goal until further testing revealed that our internet providers are still too unreliable to deliver the consistent quality we expect. Our consultant says his tests indicate about 70% reliability at this point. This makes live streaming unfeasible at this time. We are able to stream to the internet, so people can view it on the Freshwater app and web page. However, transmitting it in high definition and enlarging it simply doesn’t work to factors beyond our control and budget. We hired a tech consultant to help us continue to live stream to the internet every weekend so we will continue to do this.
Our plan is to continue to use some live teaching and some simulated live streaming for the foreseeable future. This strategy has been well received and is the best, most reliable, and cost efficient solution. There are multiple reasons why:
We will continue to develop our capabilities to live stream behind the scenes. As technology (mainly faster internet speeds at the St. Boni campus) becomes available in our area, we will pursue them and test them until they are proven reliable. Our goal is to provide consistent quality and excellence at all of our services and venues so that people will grow deeper in their faith without being distracted by technical glitches. The teaching schedule and live location/video venue will be in the program every week.
Our vision is to courageously share the life changing love of Jesus Christ in a real, relevant, and relational manner. By implementing this effective strategy, we will be able to continue to do this in a cost effective, reliable manner. Please continue to pray for Freshwater, its growth, and ministry impact in our community. We are one church with multiple locations committed to making disciples in a healthy church environment.
Blessings in Christ,
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