Wednesday, January 30, 2008
Their new facility is amazing. Huge open stage, with great creative arts spaces back behind the auditorium. A scene shop, rehearsal space, audio studio and control room spaces are all well laid out and spacious.
Thanks to Greg for a tour and a really great time of talking and tacos last week.
Tuesday, January 29, 2008
Tuesday, January 01, 2008
From a strictly linguistic standpoint, it means the "practice of technology,” I suppose.
In reality, TechnoPraxis had its beginnings more than 15 years ago.
Over the course of several years, I began to rediscover the beauty and joy of the ancient liturgy of the church. The more I looked at it, the more I loved the language, the poetry and simplicity with which it communicated truth.
Over the next few years, those initial seeds grew into a deep appreciation for more traditional worship forms, even as I was involved with churches doing fairly contemporary worship. That dichotomy played out in a largely an internal dialog. Over and over, in different contexts and in many different ways, I asked myself the same questions.
How can we properly use the tools of technology in support worship, even in a very traditional environment? Why is it so hard to integrate these new tools into the traditional worship form? How can we change our use of technology to accommodate the existing form and worship structure of an existing, tradition guided church?
Here’s the thing! It’s easy to integrate projection and video, and high energy performance audio in a church plant. It’s generally not a problem to add technology tools in a church were the form of worship is already contemporary.
The challenge comes in churches that are not out on the cutting edge? How can we correctly bring the benefits of improved technology to a church whose worship form and culture is traditionally driven. My emphasis on the word “correctly” is entirely intentional.
Over the years I’ve seen the ugly side of technology integration. Screens placed in ways that they detract from the beauty of a room, or obscure important architectural features. Lousy craftsmanship or poor finish selection or choosing the simple, but ugly way to install gear or route wires.
Often this failure is the predictable consequence of a failure to communicate, to set realistic expectations, and to explain, in advance what the congregation can expect. Resistance to technology is really just resistance to change. If we communicate what will happen, what the benefits will be, and make it clear that while things may change, we will not do violence to the familiar and sacred, these battles can be minimized, if not eliminated.
One of my sincere passions passion is working with congregations to integrate technology in ways that ultimately add to and support worship, without regard to its form. With careful communication and care in execution, I believe that all churches can open doors wider, can enjoy the benefits of new methods of communication, and can do it without offence and hurt for those who may not fully appreciate the need for change.
So that was the genesis of the term “TechnoPraxis.” In my mind, it refers to the right use of technology. Well, at least it used to! Recently my definition of “technology” has been broadened. I think now, it really refers to any tool. More on that right here!