Do you have an inspirational story or program that you would like to share with your community? Sarah Bartenstein, Director of Communications, at St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church in Richmond, VA gave me the story behind their most recent video, which tells the story of their beautiful Celtic Service:
Why Make a Video?
St. Stephen’s wanted to add a video element to their church website when they redesigned their website in 2009. Video is a good way to tell the story of various programs and ministries, particularly those featuring music. In the case of the Celtic Service, so many other churches asked about how to do a similar service, St. Stephen’s decided to make a video to give them an inside look at the service.
The video was directed at several groups: current and prospective members of St. Stephen’s; and groups organizing worship services at other churches. As Sarah explained,
“The purposes of these videos are to attract people to St. Stephen’s, as well as to let people who are already here see the breadth of our ministries. It’s a large church, so keeping people “in the loop” about everything that goes on here is a challenge. We also find that they’re sort of inspirational and affirming for our members.”
The videos are a mixture of music, interviews, narration, and scenes from worship services and program activities. Producing this type of video requires specialized equipment and computer software. Generally, this type of video is produced by a professional videographer or an advanced hobbyest.
A member of St. Stephen’s staff produced the first videos of the series. The more recent videos were made by a freelance photographer who is also a member of St. Stephen’s congregation. A critical point: both of the videographers are close to the church communitiy, so they already have a good sense of “the story” before making the video.
These stunningly beautiful videos will continue to showcase the programs and services at St. Stephen’s for many years. Several new visitors have arrived at St. Stephen’s and said they liked what they saw on the website, so they decided to visit. In addition, many of the videos have several hundred views, and are being watched all over the world.
Here is a final video, for your enjoyment. This video is gives me chills every time I watch it: