PowerPoint in the Older Church
The use of multimedia in traditional worship settings can be controversial. For some older church members, it may be jarring to see a giant video screen one Sunday. However, some may find it beneficial once it's understood that there are both proper and improper ways of using tools like PowerPoint, Keynote, ProPresenter, and MediaShout.
- Distracting animation
- Tacky clip-art
- Inappropriate movie clips
- Tasteless pictures
- A tool for taking Scripture out of context.
- A weapon for "death by powerpoint."
- Allowing the congregation to share the same Scripture translation
- Highlighting key points or keywords
- Projecting Greek/Hebrew root words
- Revealing the harmony of Scripture in parallel.
- Supplementing the message for those who are hard of hearing.
I think in the 21st century church, controversies arise not because of the tools we use, but how we use them. I avoided using PowerPoint (or rather, Keynote) at our own church for fear of creating controversy. My concern was unwarranted. We've used it recently with positive feedback. The hard of hearing liked being able to follow along. The scholarly liked seeing the exact translation. The note-takers liked seeing highlighted main points.
What do you think? Obviously, PowerPoint is not "biblical," but does that make it un-Godly? Is it adiaphora? Can it fit within any and all worship traditions?