Before You Push “Record”

Before you even turn on the first microphone, you need to consider what you will say!

Before you even turn on the first microphone, you need to consider what you will say!

Getting Your Podcasting Ducks in a Row

Expert podcasters and broadcasters are able to just hit record and create an informative and entertaining podcast. But, that ability came after many years of practice. As a former radio broadcaster, when I was just beginning, I had to have notes. And spend the time while the music was playing to practice – often times, again and again and again – until I could get the presentation just right.

I had to “hit” the introduction of the song just right, so that when I got to the end of what I was saying, I wasn’t talking over the singing. I had to make sure that I covered all the important information (who, what, when, where, why and how) in such a way that the listener would understand, and if it was supposed to be entertaining, I had to do it in such a way as to entertain.

Those skills do not come naturally – they take time to develop. So, too, does the ability to just ad lib on a topic in one take. So, do yourself a favor – be a “Boy Scout” and “be prepared!”

YOUR PODCASTING SCHEDULE
How often will you put out a new episode? Will yours be daily? Weekly? Monthly?

Big names can get away with producing a monthly podcast and still attract a large audience. Andy Stanley produces one podcast a month in his leadership category podcast. One. And, its on the top of the charts. But, that’s Andy Stanley! Don’t expect to attract a large audience with a once-a-month podcast unless you’ve got a name as big as his already.

Weekly podcasts are useful to your audience, yet, doesn’t put too much of a burden on you as a beginning podcaster. A weekly 30 minute or so long podcast can take quite a bit of time in preparation, recording, editing, writing show notes, et cetera. But, it can be quite rewarding, as well. That’s one of the reasons your church meets on a weekly basis. It’s effective and efficient to manage.

Daily (or Weekday) podcasts are good for reinforcing an idea, subject or topic in the minds of your listeners. You can spend more time on one point of a topic, while reminding the listener of the information already covered. This is good for building relationships quickly, and for training your listener to learn the truths you are teaching.

Before you decide, why not do a test run and see how long the process takes. Realizing that the more you go through the process the easier (and quicker) the process will be, you will be able to determine which frequency you’re best able to serve your listeners with.

If you need assistance in everything but the actual prep and recording (editing, show notes, posting the podcast and show notes, finding appropriate photographic images to go with the posts, etc.) Contact us about our podcasting production services. Our low-cost services will help you maintain your schedule, and we’ll keep you up to date on the latest techniques that will help you be better podcasters in the future.

Remember, if your podcast will be covering current news items specifically geared for your audience, you might want to produce podcasts on a daily basis, at least on a weekly basis. If you’re covering evergreen topics, then frequency is not as much of an issue.

HOW LONG IS YOUR PODCAST?
Decide now how long your podcast will be. A test run will help you get a realistic idea of how long an hour, or half hour will be. When I was in radio, it was difficult to explain to advertisers that you can put a lot of information into a 30 second or one minute long commercial. Then, I’d get them to talk for a timed 30 seconds about their business. Typically, they were amazed at how quickly they ran out of things to say.

Podcasts that are over thirty minutes in length stretch attention spans. It’s typically better to produce more quantity of shorter podcasts than fewer episodes of longer lengths.

Once you get your podcast going, of course, you’ll be listening to your audience. Get their feedback, listen to them, ask questions. They’ll be glad to inform you of your performance and their needs, including the length of the podcast. Just listen.

SCRIPTING EPISODES
If you’re a good communicator, and can just run off of an outline, then, by all means, use an outline. But, for the most part, you’ll want to start with a script. It’s good to use a pre-written script to keep you from rambling or doing off-topic. But, your task, as a communicator is to not read the script. Use it as a guide, knowing that the information is there in front of you if you need to glance at it.

INTERVIEW QUESTIONS
If you’re going to be interviewing guests on your podcast, create more questions than you think you’ll need. When working in radio and TV news, I typically had about 10 more questions than I ever needed with a subject. It has paid off with huge dividends.

Sometimes, the interviewee won’t, or can’t speak on a topic – for whatever reason. But, if you find yourself with a shy or non-talkative subject, its better to have an abundance of questions to ask to find something he or she may talk about more freely.

Additionally, you may find that the subject has a little bit more time to speak with you, and you’ll need the extra questions to fill the time. This is especially beneficial, since you can save those responses and use them at a later time.

COPYRIGHTS
If you’re using music in your podcast, make sure you have legal permission to use it. Get written consent from the composer, artists and producers to use that music in your podcast. It’s a hassle. So, make sure you cover your bases – it’s not fun talking to lawyers about something you should’ve done in the first place.

To avoid the legal issues you have two options. (Maybe three) First, you can use music in the public domain. These are old songs that aren’t covered by copyright laws any longer. You can search for this information through the Library of Congress’ website.

Second, you can find “royalty-free” or “needle-drop” fee production music. There are several sites on the internet that provide for the purchase of downloadable music files for production purposes.

Third, you can commission someone to compose and produce a piece of music for you.

You’ll also want to make sure if you’re using information that is not original to you, that you credit the creator of the information. Provide a link to that resource, and if you’re using it directly from the original source, make sure you ask for permission to use that information in the way you intend.

PRACTICE MAKES PERFECT
Get excited about what you’re doing before you begin. Make sure you’re smiling while you’re recording. And, by all means, make sure you have that picture of the one member of your audience in front of you. Talk to that person. Don’t call his or her name out, but just talk to them. You’re listener will appreciate that you are talking directly to them!

There will be frustrations along the way. Especially when you’re just beginning. But, through these difficulties, you’ll learn how to be a better podcaster – and a better communicator. Like any other skill, it takes perseverance and practice. But, it won’t take long before you’re making excellent podcasts – quickly!

Now, you’re ready to begin – almost! You’ve gotten your topics, you’re prepared to record. But, you need to make sure you have the proper equipment ready for the process of recording and editing. Stay tuned!

To help you in this endeavor, I’m asking that you complete the following  steps:

SUBSCRIBE
Please subscribe to my podcast, and to my weekly newsletter. By doing so, I’ll be able to send you audio and video podcasts to help you learn how to podcast your church.

DOWNLOAD
If you’d like to get a jumpstart on the podcasting movement for churches, download this free e-booklet that will give you the basics of developing your podcast.

BUY
If you’d really like to get into podcasting more quickly, purchase the DeKnumi Church Podcasting Manual for $20. You’ll get a manual on how to set up your podcast, how to record it and make it sound professional, and even how to move your podcast up the chartes in the New and Noteworthy section of iTunes and other directories.

And remember, you can be DeKnumi – you can show God, today.

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Four Steps to Overcoming Personal Slumps

stairsWe all suffer from them. Slumps. Whether its a personal drop in attitude and mental or physical health, or just a drop in your performance level at work. It could be caused by stress, or depression, or just as a result of burning your candle at both ends.

I recall my struggle with a huge personal slump in my life back in 2006-07. I’ve been quite public about it. When I moved to a neighboring state to prepare for marriage and then, a week after I moved, found out my fiancé was cheating on me. That’s about the lowest I’ve ever been in my life, I think. Praise God, He knew about my slump before it even happened, and had a plan far greater than any I had made for myself!

Well, this morning I was reading through my emails, and ran across this great advice for how to deal with slumps in life.

Many of you may know (or not), that I used to work in the broadcasting business – both radio and TV. As a result of that career path, I subscribe to some email lists pertaining to the industry still. I’d like to think that, one day, I’ll be back in that industry on some level, I guess.

At any rate, this morning, at the bottom of one of the e-mails I get, I found a three-point formula for getting back on track when you’ve fallen into a dip. The article was geared toward salespeople, so, I’m going to adapt it a bit for general use.

REVISIT THE BASICS

When you  hit a skid, you’ve hit a great opportunity to revisit the fundamentals. One of my favorite illustrations about this topic is Coach John Wooden’s story of teaching his players how to put on a sock. According to the story, Coach Wooden would walk into the first day of practice with some of the top college basketball recruits in the nation, hold up a sock and say “gentlemen, this is a sock.”

Coach Wooden’s teams were so great because he began with the most basic of fundamentals. He wanted them to know how to put on a sock! Why? Well… if you don’t put your socks on correctly, running up and down the court would create blisters on your feet. If you have blisters on your feet, you’re not going to be productive as a basketball player, because you’ll be sitting on the bench recovering.

Chose one basic skill of your ministry, your job, your life and re-learn those fundamentals can be an effective way to re-center your life, ministry or job and reconnect with the effective life you desire.

RECONNECT WITH PEOPLE

We all have loyal friends, customers, parishioners with whom we connect. Except, most of us, during slumps, begin disconnecting with friends and family.

Now is the time to focus on rebuilding and strengthening those relationships. Recall those who have poured into your life, and who have appreciated the times when you’ve poured into theirs.

Those people can provide a boost of confidence, a framework of accountability, and just a comforting presence in your life if you will open yourself up to them. By helping you to focus on those relationships that build up your life, you receive encouragement, and the freedom to take on new tasks will be bolstered through the successful reconnection with those you trust.

Those successes will help you build confidence, encouragement and the ability to take on new challenges as you are serving those around you with love, patience and understanding and they are supporting your life as well.

REPRIORITIZE TASKS

Top performers in life often break down their daily responsibilities by tasks to see if there are any ways for better time management.

Dan Hill of 48 Days fame stops all activity in the month of November to asses the previous year, and develops a plan to remove the 15% less productive things from his business and replace it with new projects and plans to improve the more productive parts of his business.

Perhaps, this time of a dip in your life is a perfect opportunity to asses the concept of the 80/20 rule’s application to your life.

Take the time to see if any opportunities are there for better time management, better human interaction, better personal development. Is there a better time to have your quiet time? A way to delegate low-impact tasks that eat up your time? Could the hiring of a low-cost Virtual Assistant take some of the menial, day-to-day tasks off or your to-do list and free you for more productive things?

Take the time, during a “slump,” to reprioritize, giving you a plan to improve your impact in life. The development of these plans will also re-invigorate you, and prepare you for a more productive period in your life.

And, I’d like to add one more way to help you come out of a slump.

RESTORE YOUR CALL

Remember the story of Samson? He had been reminded constantly of the vows to which he was to be committed. Yet, early on in his adult life, he started running into slumps. They always seemed to occur when he would allow his human desires – lusts – to override his commitments.

Until one day, when he had finally surrendered his last commitment for the chance to sleep, God’s word says “the Spirit left him.” His strength had been finally taken away by God. Until….

One day, when Samson had had enough time to evaluate where he was in life. When he had understood the source of his major slump in life. From a superhero called by God to destroy the Philistines for their sins to a slave of the very people he was called to destroy, Samson called out to God, begging Him to restore His spirit and His strength upon His man again. And, Samson then destroyed more Philistines immediately following that prayer than he had in all of his life!

Thanks to the sacrifice of Christ on the cross, we don’t have to give up our life for those super victories, we simply have to call out to God, through his Son, Jesus Christ and beg Him to restore our call, renew our strength and refocus our lives for more productivity for His kingdom and purposes here on earth.

So, the next time you hit a dip in life – a slump – let me encourage you to begin with restoring your call, then revisiting the basics, reconnecting with your people, and reprioritizing your tasks.

God bless you, and, let me challenge you to go out there and “be DeKnumi – show God, today.”

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Learning Lessons from 90+ years in Ministry

DeKnumiLogoOver the past four weeks, we have had the pleasure of learning from three different pastors in three very different situations in life. The common experience between the three are that they love God, they love serving God’s people, and they have all served in struggling churches.

Fred Luter’s Interview featured the then President of the Southern Baptist Convention, and Senior Pastor of Franklin Avenue Baptist Church in New Orleans. Pastor Fred talked about love, about the necessity of men in the church, and about being patient.

Craig Carlisle’s two interviews focused first on The Heart of a Pastor. Pastor Craig recently preached two sermons as part of a series from the letters to the Thessalonians that spoke directly to pastors and to church members about what should be expected of a pastor. He pointed out seven characteristics of a pastor who has a heart for ministry and for those to whom he ministers. In his second interview, Pastor Craig explained some of the ways a pastor can share that love through other pastors, through the ministry of the church he leads and through the ministry of other churches.

Finally, Bobby “D” Daniel spoke from the perspective of a younger pastor. He reminds the experienced pastor of some of the struggles of a younger pastor. He challenges even younger pastors to learn from mistakes and challenges in his past. And, he teaches us all some lessons he’s learned while training to run in marathons.

Three Challenges in the Podcast

  1.  Go to Stitcher Radio or iTunes (see links below) and post an honest review.
  2. Post a comment below about some important lessons you’ve learned about ministry, about work or life from an older mentor that might be of use to others (and share a word of thanks for that person)
  3. Send me a suggestion, along with contact information, for who you’d like me to interview in the next few months for the Wednesday afternoon podcast.

Thank you, I hope you enjoy and learn from these podcasts. Contact me and let me know if you are encouraged, challenged, or see room for improvement. I’m constantly seeking ways to use this medium and technology to serve others in Christ’s name!

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What You Should Podcast About

Before you even turn on the first microphone, you need to consider what you will say!

Before you even turn on the first microphone, you need to consider what you will say!

Going Beyond the Sermon

A good podcast needs a focus. It needs to have a purpose – something that is narrowly focused and specific. Your church’s podcast needs a unique angle that will  resonate with your listeners and keeps them tuned in.

START WITH PASSION
As a minister, or a church leader, of course  one of your passions is introducing others to Christ. But, beyond that, what is it that drives you? What is it that makes you want to get out of bed on those days when you don’t really feel like it?

What thing (or things) could you talk about endlessly and never tire? This is where you need to start with your podcast development. Now, it’s time to do some research:

Is there an audience for this topic?
Look online – podcast directories, forums, social media groups, blogs, etc.
Do you find other people talking about this topic?

Make a list of sites, blogs and podcasts that communicate about the same, or very similar topics. Be a consumer of their content for a period of time. How can you add to their content? What would be different about your point of view? Take notes about how you could use your experiences, education and personality to address the issues addressed by these communicators? Don’t let “competition” scare you away from blogging or podcasting! The fact that someone else is communicating about this topic means that there’s an audience!

Marry your passion and unique perspective with the needs of the audience you see in the comments section from those websites above to create your “voice” that will attract a tribe. As you are marrying these two things, you’ll need to continue your research as you seek for the way your podcast will be uniquely yours:

GIVE ‘EM WHAT THEY WANT
This typically goes against the philosophy of most church leaders and pastors. But, if you’ll find out the “pain points” of your audience, you’ll know how to help them. And what they really want is solutions to their pain points and problems. Continue to do the research above to discover their points of pain that are in desperate need of a solution. Give them what they want (and need)!

BORROW IDEAS
As you are doing your online research assignment, begin to pay attention to the more popular blogs and podcasts. Ask yourself why are these sites more popular than others? What is it they do, what attitudes, perspectives and types of solutions are they offering their followers?

Take the top three podcasts or blogs and put your own unique twist on them. There is no problem whatsoever in covering a topic that’s already been done, if you can make it different and do it better.

WHAT’S TRENDING?
More often than not, the most popular podcasts are those that are timely. They cover topics that are in the news, or trending in real-time. Can you focus your podcast so that it covers the latest news in your niche? By doing this, your listeners will be drawn in to listen to each episode because its a source of valuable news for them. 

IDEAS FOR EPISODES
Now that you’ve done your research and processed much of the ideas above, you can begin to brainstorm ideas for episodes. Before you start, though, you need to set your parameters:

  • • What is the over-arching purpose and topic of your podcast?
  • Who are you talking to?
  • Create a member of your audience that will encapsulate the person you are talking to:
  • Male or female?
  • Married or single?
  • Age?
  • Children?
  • Occupation?
  • Democrat or Republican?
  • Annual salary?
  • Vehicles?
  • Primary struggles in life?
  • Why would (s)he listen to you?

Now that you have your audience in mind, find a photo of an individual online and print it out. This is the one person you’re trying to reach and help. While you’re coming up with ideas for your episodes, keep him or her in your mind. 

Begin to brainstorm your episode topics. As you do so, ask yourself questions from your listener’s perspective. What is it they would want to know about the subject? How can your unique experiences, training, education and perspective help them answer those questions which will make a positive difference in their lives? Write down those questions and answers.

Now, you’ve got your episode list, along with a basic outline for those podcasts. Keep this list in a notebook. Each topic on one page. Keep the first five or so pages reserved for your table of contents. On those pages, list each topic you assign a page. You don’t have to use page numbers, just put each topic you write about in order of appearance in your notebook. This will be your main podcast development tool (you can also use Evernote or some similar tool).

When you begin podcasting and/or blogging, make sure you open channels of communication with your audience. Seek their feedback. Use it as a topic generator for future podcasts and blog posts. Put those topics in your notebook as well.

In a future post, I’ll teach you how to use two online tools to help you generate quick research to help you fill out those topics with ideas and information that will benefit your audience.

KEEP IT CURRENT
Podcasts evolve and change over time. There may be times when your podcast’s focus pivots from its original plans. As long as you’re still keeping your listeners’ ears, that’s fine. The key to a successful podcast is listening to your audience and giving them what they want, and need, to improve their lives.

Now that you have a process by which you can easily develop topics for your podcast (or blog), you have no excuse than to get ready to start! To help you in this endeavor, I’m asking that you complete the following  steps:

SUBSCRIBE
Please subscribe to my podcast, and to my weekly newsletter. By doing so, I’ll be able to send you audio and video podcasts to help you learn how to podcast your church.

DOWNLOAD
If you’d like to get a jumpstart on the podcasting movement for churches, download this free e-booklet that will give you the basics of developing your podcast.

BUY
If you’d really like to get into podcasting more quickly, purchase the DeKnumi Church Podcasting Manual for $20. You’ll get a manual on how to set up your podcast, how to record it and make it sound professional, and even how to move your podcast up the charts in the New and Noteworthy section of iTunes and other directories.

And remember, you can be DeKnumi – you can show God, today.

SUBSCRIBE
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Rev. Bobby Daniel serves as Senior Pastor at First Baptist Church, Vinton, Louisiana - just outside of Lake Charles. He talks with DeKnumi Podcast host Phillip Swindall about the struggles of being a young pastor in struggling churches.

Rev. Bobby Daniel serves as Senior Pastor at First Baptist Church, Vinton, Louisiana – just outside of Lake Charles. He talks with DeKnumi Podcast host Phillip Swindall about the struggles of being a young pastor in struggling churches.

Podcast #36 – Lessons from a New Pastor in a Struggling Church

Bobby Daniel has been married to Brigitte, a Midwestern girl and adopted Cajun, for 18 years. They have two great children; their daughter Regan and son Caleb. They have been at First Baptist of Vinton, LA for 5 years and feel that this little town is “home” for them.

Rev. Bobby Daniel is known by his friends as simply “Bobby D.” He was called to salvation and ministry out of a deeply Catholic background in Lafayette, Louisiana, while being involved in the Baptist Student Union at Jones County Junior College, in Ellisville, MS.

After JCJC, Daniel went to college at William Carey University and the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary where he studied under the current president of LifeWay Christian Resources, Thom Rainer. Daniel credits Rainer with helping prepare him for being a servant leader in struggling churches. But, he says, the only true preparation is just putting your life into the life of the people in the church and showing them that you love them.

Bobby also talks a little about running marathons and getting healthy.

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 Why is Podcasting Right for My Church?

An Introduction to Podcasting and How it Can Help Grow Your Church

At its basic level, a podcast is a type of radio show for the internet. Simply explained, a podcast is an mp3 audio file (or an m4v video file) that can be streamed online or downloaded for playback. Like a radio show, podcasters “broadcast” on a regular schedule. Unlike radio, podcast episodes can be played (or replayed) at any time the listener chooses. Think of it like a DVR for your radio programs.

Each episode of a podcast will cover a topic that is related to your audience’s interests. They can offer news, advice, interviews, instructions, entertainment or some other type of programming. When you look at a podcast directory, like iTunes, you will see several types of podcasts covering just about every topic under the sun.

Even podcasts in the “Religious and Spirituality” category offer different types of programs. There are interviews, solo hosts, co-hosts, preaching, teaching, debates and entertainment. There are Christians, atheists, Buddhists, Muslims and more. 

For most podcasters, there’s little money to be made, but, with a large enough audience, a podcaster can create an income stream through his or her podcasting service. We call it a service because podcasts are typically free to the subscriber. But, if you’re a church podcast, you’re not interested in making money off of the service as much as you are reaching others with the Gospel message. There are some other reasons, though:

PODCASTS ARE POPULAR

In a 2013 Time Magazine article, Apple Computer is quoted as having announced its customers had subscribed to more than a billion podcasts in the eight years since iTunes burst onto the scene. As a matter of fact, podcasting had struggled for an identity until Steve Jobs introduced the world to his iPod and the iTunes store, which offered access to internet radio shows – which eventually earned the name “podcasts” based solely on the small audio device created by Jobs and his band of engineers.

One of the contributing factor to the popularity of audio podcasts is the fact that audio is an easier to digest package of information. Add to the current growth of podcasting the impact of Stitcher and iTunes compatible in-dash automotive radio systems, and it seems podcasting is staged for another huge growth in subscriptions and downloads.

A WORLDWIDE AUDIENCE

Through your podcast, a wider audience – a worldwide audience will be reached. Through your podcast, you can lead them to your website, and other information channels. Anyone in the world can listen to your podcast. You’ll be discovered by people from across the globe, people who don’t read blogs, watch videos or participate in social media will hear your podcast – increasing the reach of your message into the uttermost parts of the earth. Even your Jerusalem.

INEXPENSIVE AND SIMPLE MARKETING

Podcasts can be used to grow your audience – both on and off-line. It provides additional exposure and brings new leads to your marketing channels to bring people to your church and to your Christian message. On top of that, podcasting is extremely low cost. And for most churches, the equipment is already in place for your recording efforts. Once the audio is produced, with the exception of hosting services, the distribution of podcasting episodes is very cheap.

THE DEMOCRATIZATION OF RADIO

Has your church priced the rates local radio stations charge for long-form Christian programming lately? Podcasting has “democratized” radio broadcasting. Radio stations have strict programming rules your broadcast must meet. Between content, presentation style, time constraints and broadcasting rates, radio stations can be very difficult to deal with – if you can afford dealing with them! With podcasting, you don’t have to go through program directors, censors, or sales people to get your program on the air… you just set up your podcast and go!

THE BEST TIME TO PLANT A TREE… OR START A PODCAST

There is an ancient Chinese proverb that says “The best time to plant a tree is 20 years ago… Today is the second best time.” There’s a lot of truth to that statement. In Christian circles, we will recall Paul telling us to put away all those things behind us, but to press on (today) toward the high calling of Grace to which Christ has called us. 

Today is the day you need to start working on your podcast! By subscribing to our Church Podcasting Secrets training program, you’ll be able to have your podcast up and running, live on iTunes and other podcasting directories in a month or less!

To help you in this endeavor, I’m asking that you complete the following  steps:

SUBSCRIBE

Please subscribe to my podcast, and to my weekly newsletter. By doing so, I’ll be able to send you audio and video podcasts to help you learn how to podcast your church.

DOWNLOAD

If you’d like to get a jumpstart on the podcasting movement for churches, download this free e-booklet that will give you the basics of developing your podcast.

BUY

If you’d really like to get into podcasting more quickly, purchase the DeKnumi Church Podcasting Manual for $20. You’ll get a manual on how to set up your podcast, how to record it and make it sound professional, and even how to move your podcast up the chartes in the New and Noteworthy section of iTunes and other directories.

And remember, you can be DeKnumi – you can show God, today.

 

SUBSCRIBE
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12TH Street Baptist Church, Gadsden, AL Senior Pastor Craig Carlisle mentors several new and young pastors in his area of Alabama. He is motivated to do so by others who mentored him in a previous pastorate.

12TH Street Baptist Church, Gadsden, AL Senior Pastor Craig Carlisle mentors several new and young pastors in his area of Alabama. He is motivated to do so by others who mentored him in a previous pastorate.

How One Pastor Supports Other Pastors

Craig Carlisle, Senor Pastor, 12th Street Baptist Church

Pastor Craig is my pastor at 12th Street Baptist. He is a humble man who is a loving leader. In his nearly 30 years of ministry, he has served three congregations. That’s an indicator of how well he leads.

In his seven years at 12th Street, he has led the congregation to move across the county, to a neighboring town. He has led the 100+ year old church to begin new ministries, including a Soup Kitchen for needy families, a mission partnership with a struggling church in our county, and partnerships with two churches in North America, as well as mission support for missionaries in New York City, and several locations in Africa.

And while doing all of those things, on top of his preaching and ministry services to the membership of 12th Street, Craig has also poured himself into the lives and ministries of several pastors in the region.

In today’s podcast, the Rev. Craig Carlisle concludes this 2 part interview with a testimony of his need for mentors, and his willingness to mentor others when the opportunity arises!

 

 

 

PASTOR CRAIG CARLISLE

Craig came to Twelfth Street in February 2008 as the Pastor. Craig attended Twelfth Street with his family when he was a boy and credits his biblical foundation to the teachers and leaders of Twelfth Street. After Pastoring in near by Decatur, AL for 16 years the Lord called him and his family back to Gadsden. Craig has holds a Bachelor of Arts in History/Religion from Samford University, a Masters in Divinity from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary and Doctor of Ministry in Evangelism & Church Growth from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. He loves to cook and is always trying new recipes that he tests out on his wife, Tammy, and daughter, Jordan, which they always “love”.

You can contact Craig at Craigc@12th.co

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Sunday, I began my June “30 Days of Hustle” with Christian writer Jon Acuff is challenging any who will accept to commit to a “30 Days of Hustle” challenge. My challenge is to do 30 things – one each day – in order to accomplish ONE goal.

I’ve set as my goal to produce 30 podcasts that will help a church or pastor get a podcast setup and “on the air” (so to speak) in 30 days! I know the 30 days goal is possible…. but, just pray that I stay healthy and don’t get too excited by the next bright and shiny – SQUIRREL!

Oh…. where was I… (reading under my breath, “bright and shiny…”) OH!!! thing!!! Yeah… stay focused! That’s what I’ve got to do this month!!!

So, here’s the first video… it’s like a commercial of sorts about the 30 videos that will help you get your podcast up and running by the end of the month. Keep listening and watching, and if you follow these 30 steps – one a day – by the end of June, you’ll be podcasting like a champ!

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Using Podcasts to Reach the World

Before you even turn on the first microphone, you need to consider what you will say!

Before you even turn on the first microphone, you need to consider what you will say!

How Churches Can Reach the Entire World Through the Internet

Over the years, the church has traditionally used the latest communication tools and techniques to reach the world with the message of salvation through Jesus the Christ. Most of the famous paintings from European artists were commissioned by the Roman Catholic church to communicate Bible stories, or to inspire to some lofty goal espoused in Christian literature.

The Gutenberg Press replaced communities of monks who were tasked with transcribing as many pages of Scripture as they possibly could so that at least some might be able to hold and read scripture. The Gutenberg press provided a way to mass produce the Bible (and other books), in such a way that it brought about a democratization of Scripture that eventually ushered in the Protestant Reformation and translations, such as the one produced by Wycliffe.

Later, with the advent of radio broadcasting, several radio stations and radio programs were created for the sole purpose of preaching and teaching the Scriptures to peoples across the globe. Radio is still a tremendous tool for gospel presentation. It’s sister, television, is as well. But, both of these avenues of communication are costly to produce and disseminate.

The Internet Arrives
In the late 1980’s computers with modems, and networks of bulletin board systems were created to provide means of electronic communication. I subscribed to a number of BBS networks while living in rural southwestern Mississippi that gave me access to people across the globe. We traded files, sent what would eventually become known as email, and learned techniques that would be beneficial once the internet was opened up to the masses.

In the late 1980’s and early 1990’s internet dial-up services such as Prodigy, CompuServe and America Online came on the scene. The access they provided to the “real” internet was limited, but, it began to whet the appetite for subscribers to have access to all that was the internet at that time. By the way, there wasn’t that much to the internet – text based information, command line interface controls and volumes of texts from college research centers and the like.

Then, with the advent of the browser, hyper-text markup language (HTML), and the graphical user interface (introduced by Apple), the age of the internet was truly born. With it, others began to develop new technologies and new methods of communicating. As technology improved (my first modem was 300 bauds per second – today, I’m using a 50GB per second modem, for instance) developers came up with new ways to merge the major three forms of mass communication – radio, television and print – into a new disseminator of messages. These new media were cheaper to produce, cheaper to distribute and easier to manage.

Podcasting
In the late 1990’s blogging began to expand with platforms like Moveable Type and others (most of which do not exist any longer) to manage the content. Content Management Systems (CMS) now handle most website development today, where, in the 1990s coders who were proficient in HTML designed and programmed most websites.

Blogging was considered to be the democratization of print media. A few years later, as technology and internet speeds improved, the democratization of radio arrived – and when Apple Computers introduced the iPod, the name of Podcasting stuck.

Podcasting married the blog’s CMS, a new technology called Real Simple Syndication (RSS) that was developed to help readers keep up with the growing number of blogs they followed, and the posting of audio files onto the internet. While podcasting existed prior to the marketing of the iPod, it was this development – and the iTunes Store – that brought podcasting to the cutting edge of communication technology.

Today, in 2014, Apple and several other industry leaders in podcasting technology are recognizing the growth of the podcast and are working together to provide more avenues of access to this communication tool. Apple has just introduced a new platform that allows our iPhones, iPods and iPads to be used as media tools in our vehicles. Stitcher Radio, iHeart Radio and others are helping bring the podcast to the dashboard of our vehicles in creative, new ways – as a replacement to what has become a broken local broadcasting system that has become mostly nationalized with satellite syndication and the like.

Church Podcasting
However, when one looks through Podcasting Directories, such as iTunes and Stitcher, we find that there are many more business, or entertainment podcasts – even educational podcasts – than there are podcasts distributing the message of the gospel. Churches have been slow to adapt to the new technologies.

Survey your church members and you’ll find that the vast majority of them now have smartphones. As phone makers stop making “flip phones” for the more lucrative smart phone market, even more cell phone users will migrate to the new high-tech phones. The very phones that make it even easier to distribute your message through the internet to the very location where your listener is – at all times.

Over the next few weeks, DeKnumi will focus on the art and science of podcasting for the purpose of communicating the gospel. By the end of the summer months in North America has come to a close, if you follow my podcast and my posts, you’ll have been able to develop your own podcast. I hope you’ll join us weekly for the training and philosophy behind what it takes to be a podcaster in the religious community.

To help you in this endeavor, I’m asking that you complete the following  steps:
SUBSCRIBE
Please subscribe to my podcast, and to my weekly newsletter. By doing so, I’ll be able to send you audio and video podcasts to help you learn how to podcast your church.

DOWNLOAD
If you’d like to get a jumpstart on the podcasting movement for churches, download this free e-booklet that will give you the basics of developing your podcast.

BUY
If you’d really like to get into podcasting more quickly, purchase the DeKnumi Church Podcasting Manual for $20. You’ll get a manual on how to set up your podcast, how to record it and make it sound professional, and even how to move your podcast up the chartes in the New and Noteworthy section of iTunes and other directories.

And remember, you can be DeKnumi – you can show God, today.

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mixerStarting a new blog series on Podcasting for Churches

Over the next ten weeks or so, I’ve decided to offer some assistance to church leaders who are interested in podcasting.

As you can tell, I’m a huge proponent of the use of this technology to reach the masses and to reach individuals with the saving message of Christ.

I feel it is a largely untapped ministry gold mine. There is no other technology out there – not even video – that allows you to send a message to so many people in such an intimate setting and reach their hearts as efficiently as podcasting!

For that reason alone, I’ve decided to put my thoughts together and release a series of articles on podcasting to help church leaders know about the medium and to learn how to put a podcast together.

Some YouTube Tutorial Videos, too!

I am also in the process of developing a few screencasts to show you how to create your own podcast, publish it to iTunes and Stitcher and promote your podcast to the world.

If you’re interested in getting access to ALL of the resources at once, I’m in the process of building an e-book tutorial for download. Contact me at phillip@deknumi.com and I’ll let you know how you can get this information in one easy to access package.

Series starts tomorrow!

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