These days, technology is playing more and more of a prominent role in the life of the Church.
A study released in September by Hartford Seminary insinuates that technology such as LCD TVs and iPads are illuminating religious communities these days. In the decade-long study, the scramble to embrace technology was one of the most significant changes in American congregations.
The study analyzed over 30 religions, including Protestants, Mormons, Muslims, Catholics and Jews, and found that congregations that have significant numbers of young adults are twice as likely to use technology heavily.
The report found evangelical Christians to be the most tech-savvy group.
Technology is most dramatically used during many churches’ sermons, such as at Fellowship Church in Dallas, Texas. The parishioners at this church follow the sermons of Pastor Ed Young, Sr., through high-definition video as Young is beamed from the mother church in Grapevine, Texas, into their sanctuary.
Young is part of new generation of worship leaders who are using technology--including high-def video and even holograms--to present their Sunday morning sermons from “mother” churches to their “satellite” churches.
In addition to technology used during sermons, more churches have even embraced technology concerning monetary donations. E-giving has many benefits, says Deborah Matthews of ACH Direct, such as church members’ being able to “remain faithful to their commitment to give even when they are not physically at church,” such as during summer vacations, inclement weather and illnesses.
According to the 2010 Federal Reserve Payments Study, over three-quarters of noncash payments made last year were made electronically.
At Morning Star Church in Dardenne Prairie, Missouri, Past Mike Schreiner encourages his congregation members to text message their questions to him throughout his sermon. His assistant, John Carrington, screens the questions, and the chosen ones are shown on a computer screen in front of Schreiner and read anonymously. The worship leader feels the accessibility that texting gives to his members is important.