Podcast Episode 020, 49 min
Online and In-Person Worship, with Jason Moore (Ep 20)
Karl interviews Jason Moore on the subject of how to blend online & in-person worship. Jason is the founder of the Both/And seminars which helps churches of all sizes create a better worship experience for both the online audience and the in-person congregation. In this conversation, I talk to Jason about how a church of any size can use online and in-person church to make each a better experience for worshipers.

Karl Vaters: So Jason, welcome today to the podcast. I sure appreciate your time.

Jason Moore:Glad to be here.

Karl Vaters: Now you started a ministry called Both/And, and with that title, it could mean virtually anything. So tell me what Both/And..., where did Both/And begin, what brought you into it, and what is it all about, for those listeners who haven't heard about you or it at all?

Jason Moore: Sure. Sure. Well, thank you, first of all, for the opportunity to have the conversation. I'm glad to chat with you. So my ministry, Midnight Oil Productions, I've been doing for quite a while, and my focus has really been for 20 or more years now on in-person worship, and I teach pastors how to do collaborative worship design and all those sorts of things, how to do hospitality, guest readiness and so on.

And then, of course, like happened to everyone last year when the world shut down, it meant that my world shut down as well. Just in the course of, like, three days, I had six events that I was supposed to go do in person cancel; events where I was teaching people the collaborative worship design process and guest readiness and so on. And so there was a little bit of a precursor to Both/And, but I can tell you how we got to Both/And. I had done a consultation for a church - kind of a smaller church in the Denver area - that had me come out and do a secret worshipper consultation. So I just showed up and gave them perspective on everything from signage to hospitality and so on and so forth.

And I got kind of a panicked call last March from the pastor of that church, who said, Jason, we implemented all the stuff you shared with us, but they just shut our church down, we can no longer meet in person. Would you be willing to secret worship our online worship experience? And so I said, sure. And I wrote up some notes for him and realized in reading over those notes that so much of what I had to share with him really would apply to any church that had to jump online during this pandemic.

So I asked if he minded if I turned it into a little short article\, and so I put it out on Facebook. It was Five ways to Improve your Stream Before Next Week. And the day after writing that I started having - I do a lot of work in the United Methodist church world - I started having United Methodist leaders contact me and say, would you turn that into a webinar for us?

So actually that was called telling the old story in a new time; it was about how to do online worship. The further we got into the pandemic, and when I started to recognize that people are going to come back into the room, I started to get a little concerned about what happens after a year of doing worship online, when we get people back in the room. We might very easily go backwards and not go forwards. So I developed this training that I call Both/And, Maximizing Hybrid Worship for In-Person and Online Audiences, with the intent of creating worship where no one feels like an afterthought. So you do worship for people in the room, both in the room and online at home, and also you're creating an experience for people who might also watch on delay, not just in the moment. So how do we create an experience where we don't turn the people in the room into the studio audience for the people at home; we don't turn the people at home into observers of an experience that the people are having in the room; and we also open it up so that if you watch it on delay, it still feels like it applies to you as well. So I know that's a big nutshell, but that in a nutshell...

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