Monday, October 19, 2009


Two of my last three churches are now doing satellite campuses.  All of the satellite campuses I've heard of have separate greeters, childcare workers, bands, and announcement folks...but the same speakers....on the tv.

Of the last 12 people I've asked, zero have said they'd like to watch a sermon on video.
Give the people what they want?

It's hard for me to think that this isn't about ego or numbers.

It's a church plant, but the numbers still count for the host church.  Numbers!
It's another church where the speaker gets to be the main focal point.  Me!

I believe most churches have 2-5% of their people who are probably somewhat capable of speaking on the weekend.  Huge churches have hundreds of people and small churches have a few.  If you're going to create a separate environment for a group of people...and have an entirely different band and everything else...what's so sacred about the guy or gal speaking?  Is that part less important than the announcement person...and that's why it's ok to pipe them in from across town?  Is that part more important and that's why we have to have them, even if it's only a video feed?

Is a good speaker harder to get than a good band?  If you feed video of a speaker, couldn't you feed video of the band?  Would it be that crazy to just turn on the tv and show the latest televangelist? 

I've heard about the church that has several services going on at once.  They have the country music one, the contemporary one, the traditional one...and the one thing they all share is video of the speaker.  Does it make sense that people have different tastes in music?  Different styles?  Different ways that they prefer to focus on God? find ways that connect to those people through atmosphere, music..but make sure they all have the exact same style of communication when it comes to the speaker?  Does that seem logical?

I think I understand the basic advantages of a satellite campus over a church plant.
1.  You'd save money on staff and resources because you could share those resources.
2.  also, you'd have...or there'd be, ultimately you'd have to admit that there would be...?

I haven't read dozens of books on this and I sure haven't spoken to more than four or five churches that have done this...I just don't understand it.


  1. Anonymous11:09 AM

    I completely understand it when you have a dynamic speaker who reaches people. I have been to I don't know how many churches over the years, but the guy who speaks at our church is by far the most powerful, inspirational leader I have ever heard. The church I go to actually opened another one that is much closer to my house and has services that are more convenient with my schedule, but I do not feel the inspiration and get as much out of the message when I go to that service. Therefore I continue to attend the church with the speaker who reaches me personally. I also understand that it makes sense in these economic times to broadcast a service to a school across town to reach more people than to start up a new church.

  2. Mega-churches have mega-pastors who I'm guessing battle with mega-pride issues. Maybe not.

    On a side note, did you see the ABC news special on Benny Hinn last night? Fascinating.

  3. SMM - I see your point. Agreed. For now.

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