Setting up for a “portable church” can present many obstacles each week, but with a little pre-planning, you can streamline the set up process in order to stay on schedule.
The church I work for, SonRise Community Church in Cincinnati, has been portable for the past 10 years. I have been privileged to serve as the creative director for the last three.
Within that time, we have been faced with some difficult and frustrating situations that, if not properly managed, could easily destroy the spirit of worship, and sometimes has.
Each week SonRise meets at a high school that is opened up for us, and sometimes there are factors beyond our control that keep us from getting in the building on time.
This can present itself to be a major problem, but with some trouble-shooting, we are able to better manage these situations as they arise.
Here are some things to keep in mind if you are a portable church setting up your worship venue each week:
Before anything comes off of the truck to load in, pray; give the day to God!
Put wheels on as many cases and equipment as possible. Nothing expedites your set-up more than taking fewer trips to the truck.
Work with your set-up team to help them understand what goes where, and also let them know if you have something new on the truck for a particular service.
Take the most direct route when loading in gear and equipment. This may sound elementary, but it is a common mistake.
Designate areas of set-up once your truck has been unloaded. Who sets up the audio console? Who sets up the front of house?
Who runs the mic lines? Who mics the drum kit? Who sets up the lights and video system? All of these things waste time if everyone stands around wondering what to do next.
When running mic lines on the stage, don’t run 48 individual lines by themselves. Identify major “runways” for the mic lines.
If you have three major “runways” where you see mic lines running together, use some wire ties and make a loom. Now you’ve cut running 48 different lines down to running three different looms.
After each service, pack the truck the same way every week. If you are consistent in the way you tear down, you can be consistent when you load in your gear each week.
I hope these tips both help and encourage your church ministry. As a portable church, we have a unique opportunity to minister in a variety of different ways to those who run the facility in which we worship, and also to those who help us set up each week.
For more worship audio tips and techniques visit Sennheiser.com.