Category Archives: Lafayette Community Church

LCC Weekly :: November 4 & 11, 2012

Front Page Lafayette Community Church Leadership

This is part of a series of posts aimed at supporting and encouraging the volunteers of Lafayette Community Church.

Sunday Review

Our past two Sunday gatherings have been truly refreshing to me. For one thing, Jake Steffes has been selecting our music, and he has done a great job of not only picking songs that resonate with the theme but also ordering them in a way that encourages us on Sundays to release ourselves into God’s presence. His work has taken a load off of my mind and has given our band more time to prepare! Continue reading

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LCC Weekly :: October 28, 2012

Front Page Lafayette Community Church Leadership

This is part of a series of posts aimed at supporting and encouraging the volunteers of Lafayette Community Church.

Sunday Review

What an incredible Sunday we experienced last week! Not only did we get the weekend started right with our Volunteer Refresh event on Saturday evening, but the whole weekend we were blessed to have Brian Fraaza and his band with us.

It was also a great blessing to have Greg Shackleford, a great friend of mine and a founding member of this church, joining us this weekend as a part of Brian’s band. I also want to recognize Kelsey and Ben who drove down from Kalamazoo with Brian and Greg to bless us with their musical talents. Continue reading

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LCC Weekly :: October 21, 2012

Front Page Lafayette Community Church Leadership

This is part of a series of posts aimed at supporting and encouraging the volunteers of Lafayette Community Church.

Sunday Review


What made the music for this past Sunday extra special and extra refreshing for me was that Jake Steffes took the lead on planning the setlist and coordinating the band practice. I still say it is a joy to work with Jake, and I know all the rest of the band appreciates him as much as I do. Thanks Jake!


This Sunday brought the second message in my series on conflict resolution called “f.i.g.h.t.” and there were aspects of it that were really personal for me. Continue reading

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LCC Weekly :: October 12, 2012

Front Page Lafayette Community Church Leadership

This is part of a series of posts aimed at supporting and encouraging the volunteers of Lafayette Community Church.

Sunday Review


On Sunday, I started a brand new series of messages I’m calling “f.i.g.h.t” to cover the five skills you need to handle any kind of conflict that may come your way.

This is a really personal issue for me. I remember as a child seeing all the conflict that arose in my home church. There were debates over whether the leaders of the church should be called Deacons, Elders, or Overseers. There were debates on whether the missionaries should get more money or the school. There were debates over whether the pastor really deserved as much money as they gave him. Continue reading

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LCC Weekly :: October 7, 2012

Front Page Lafayette Community Church Leadership

This is part of a series of posts aimed at supporting and encouraging the volunteers of Lafayette Community Church.

Sunday Review

Before I report on this last Sunday, I need to apologize for not putting out a report for the previous week. I have no excuse other than I let myself get too busy with other things.

This past Sunday, we were blessed with Andrew Johnson’s return to the stage as our worship leader. Even though I enjoy leading worship music, I was grateful to have him on stage because this past Sunday was PACKED with some really great stuff. Continue reading

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Overheard in yesterday’s sermon…

Front Page Lafayette Community Church

During my message yesterday at Lafayette Community Church, I made reference to a couple psychological researchers who made presentations at the TED conference regarding happiness and freedom and choice.

The two researchers are Dan Gilbert and Barry Schwartz. Linked here are the videos where they explain the results of their research:

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2009 Commitment Sunday

Front Page Lafayette Community Church

(Cross-posted at )

Yesterday was one incredible Sunday! For those of you who want to get the bullets first, here are the statistics on Lafayette Community Church’s 2009 Commitment Sunday:

  • 13 people were baptized.
  • 3 children were dedicated.
  • 152 people were in attendance.
  • $2500 (roughly) was donated.
  • 59 people signed the Community Commitment
  • 8 people signed the Associate’s Commitment

Now for the details. Continue reading

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Professional Sunday Morning Video Presentations

Church Planting Front Page Geekery Lafayette Lafayette Community Church Leadership

In our new church effort in Lafayette, I set as a goal from very early on that we would attempt to do everything we could with excellence, and though we have had some hiccups with our children’s programming and with our music, we have been consistently high quality with our printed materials and with our video presentations thanks to some really great software.

On the printed front, we have been using Apple’s Pages for basic word processing and simple page design and Serif PagePlus 11 which is exponentially greater than anything else in its price range ($50 for features that easily surpass Microsoft Publisher and even rival PageMaker or Quark). However, that’s for another blog entry. On to what we do for video now and what our next steps are.

Video Presentation Hardware

  • 15″ MacBook Pro 2.16 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo / 1GB RAM
  • Draper Traveller portable projection screen with High Contrast Gray screen material.
  • DLP Projector (I don’t remember the specs right now).



ProPresenter is the best program we have found to display lyrics on the screen. It’s very easy to learn with only a few quirks that take getting used to. Together with the Mac, it is unbeatable in terms of visual quality of the text even with full motion high resolution video images in the background. On top of that, the programmers are very responsive to requests for improvements, and the software was designed from the ground up to meet the needs of touring worship bands like Chris Tomlin and David Crowder.

Keynote is the hands down winner in presentation software that understands the line between attention-getting and cheesy. Transitions, fades, and slide builds are unmatched in PowerPoint because Keynote does what it does with subtlety. It’s also much easier to work with once you learn a couple of its quirks.

Our current setup has us running ProPresenter and Keynote simultaneously on the MacBook Pro. ProPresenter takes over the projector screen and turns it black while waiting for us to begin. Navigation is done on the laptop screen, but lyrics and backgrounds are sent to the secondary display.

Just before my message, we hit F1 in ProPresenter to black out the projection screen, switch to Keynote without closing ProPresenter (the projection screen stays black during and after the switch), and hit “Play” on my sermon Keynote file. Keynote takes over the projection screen with my slides and also displays a “Presenter View” on the laptop screen. We turn the laptop to face me, so I can see my current slide and my next slide without ever needing to look over my shoulder.

Next Steps

Now that we are meeting in the Long Center (a larger venue), we want to make some changes to our setup so we stay on the excellent side of things.

  1. Replace our screen with a larger rear projection screen. We’re looking at the Draper Cinefold and Draper Ultimate series of screens for this.
  2. Consider upgrading our projector depending on its performance with the new screen. Most likely, we will just need to buy a new bulb.
  3. Purchase a new Mac to put in the sound booth. It needs to have dual external monitor capability, and the only Macs to have that now are Mac Pro computers or Psystar Open Computer Macintosh clones.
  4. Split the monitor signal from each monitor out to drive four displays (1). The monitor in the sound booth, (2). the projector on stage, (3) One monitor in front row pointing to stage duplicating what’s on the projector screen. (4) One monitor in front row pointing to the stage duplicating what’s on the screen in the sound booth. That way, the stage-facing monitors will show what’s on the screen and also show the “Presenter View” that Keynote can display.
  5. Use VGA cables or a VGA over CAT5e system to get video signal to the stage from the booth.

Final thoughts

If anyone is reading this post thinking that technology will save your bad presentations, think again. Websites like are a great resource to help you rethink the how and the why of your presentations. Technology can make your presentations more effective, but it isn’t guaranteed to do so.

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Easter was a Smashing Success!

Front Page Lafayette Community Church

Our Easter Sunday service was an incredible success! We had the joy of meeting in the Long Center for the Performing Arts in downtown Lafayette, and nearly 100 people gathered to celebrate the resurrection of Christ and the anniversary of our church. Media from the morning will be posted soon, but I thought you might appreciate this video clip that I used as my sermon introduction and a video clip that I almost used as my introduction.

The one I used (from the Princess Bride)

The one I almost used (from Monty Python and the Holy Grail)

Quotes from the morning.

I like a church where I feel comfortable bringing my family no matter what age. I love the music… Keep up the good work. — Tama

The music ROCKED this morning! I liked the message — I love your practical, real world way of relaying the message. And it’s engaging too! — Nichole

…we are truly wanting to get back to church. I feel to be a whole person I must include God. Thank you for allowing me to be whole again. God bless!! — Cathie

I’ve grown more spiritually in the few months here at Southside than at any time in my life! — Len

A Note from Greg

In addition to these quotes, I wanted to post an excerpt from an email that Greg Shackleford sent out yesterday. For those who don’t know, Greg is on the church Advisory Team and has been part of the church since October 2005! Here’s what he had to say.


I just can’t get over what an awesome experience it has been getting ready for the service today. Jeff and I have been working as musicians for two years for this! I never envisioned that we would finally get a band together that would sound that good and I would be playing drums!! It just goes to show that God really does work in mysterious ways.

Jeff and I had only played with Mark and Terry 4 times coming into today’s service so God really was a part of it today. I was nervous and excited and hopeful that we would be able to pull together and perform well and I think we did. Jeff’s sermon was wonderful and all the new faces there this morning was so encouraging! I just know that someone made the decision to turn their life over to the care of Christ today. Praise God! I really enjoy having the opportunity to serve the church and our Lord in this capacity. Thanks for letting me.

Wouldn’t it be awesome if we filled the Long center up next Easter!?

It was a great day!

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Church Website Redesign

Front Page Geekery Lafayette Community Church

So I’m embarking on a redesign of our church website…

Our current website has been in shambles for a while now and I haven’t taken the time to really fix it. However, there are a few things I want the site to accomplish:

  1. Have an attractive, fast-loading initial page that communicates friendliness and “contemporary-ness”
  2. Have an easy-access media player to watch video and listen to audio files.
  3. Have an easy-to-use podcast system for downloading media files.
  4. Provide a section for standard Church Marketing Documents.
  5. Provide for blog-style news updates.

The current plan is to implement the site with the WordPress engine. The plan is a work in progress now, but here’s the technical stuff:

  1. Create a WordPress compatible theme and overall design of the site.
  2. Use WordPress pages to host specific content.
  3. Use the blog post system for both media files and for news items. (“sermon” category with subcategories, “news” category, “articles” category, and use the built in tagging system for posts in those categories)
  4. Use the “Podcasting” plugin to provide separate audio and video podcast feeds.
  5. Modify the Email-Notification plugin to send out newsletters to our mailing list.

I plan to do this on a test site first to see how it will all work, and if you are interested in giving me ideas or suggestions, I’d love to take them. Here are a few other church websites that you can look at to give me some help.

If you have any other church website suggestions, post them in the comments!

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Game On! Announcing the SCGTC

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On Sunday, I challenged my congregation to join me for a competition of spending time in the word of God. I called it The Southside Church God-Time Competition, and here are the simple rules:

  • At least 10 minutes a day with God, every day.
  • Time with God means something is read (from the Bible), something is written, and something is prayed.
  • There will be some kind of award given for the person who lasts the longest.
  • There will be some kind of award given for the person who accumulates the most individual “God-Times.”

I haven’t figured out the prizes yet, but I’m willing to take donations! If you want to sweeten the pot, let me know!

I’m also working on setting up some kind of online tool to track our progress and see how we are all doing. For me personally, I’m going to use my blog to record my progress.

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Southside Church is Relocating!

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For the second time in our brief history, Southside Church will change our Sunday morning meeting place.

We started in an elementary school. Then we went to a Junior High. So where would you think we would go next?

That’s right!

The Holiday Inn! Actually, it’s the Holiday Inn Select: City Center here in Lafayette.

<br/>View Larger Map

We think it’s going to be a great opportunity for us, and I’m really excited… but now, we have to rethink our name. Downtown isn’t exactly “Southside” anymore, although the hotel is actually on “South Street”!

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