Untangled_inlineWESTLAKE, Ohio—One of techPartner’s passions is to help church plants effectively use technology to reach the lost for Christ. “But with so much change, updates, and options,” the organization says, “it’s hard to know what to choose.” TechPartner, a ministry of Baptist Church Planters, hosted a technology conference called “Untangled” Nov. 7 and 8 at Grace Baptist Church to help churches eliminate the hassle of technology and use it to minister more effectively.

Pastors and techies both benefited from the conference’s workshops, which aimed to help pastors understand the importance of technology in ministry and increase tech workers’ understanding and awareness of technology available to help fulfill their churches’ goals. “Technology is a tool to do ministry, so we want to make it easier for churches to use it!” says Chris Brown, techPartner director.

Tech coaches from diverse backgrounds led a powerful lineup of workshops. Joining Chris Brown were Daniel Chin, an IT employee at the GARBC Resource Center in Schaumburg, Ill., who has been working in pro-audio since 2001; Joshua McCarty, tech ministry coordinator at First Baptist Community Church, Monte Sereno, Calif.; Doug Porter, technology manager at Saylorville Church, Des Moines, Iowa; and Eric Vanderburg, director of information systems and security for JURINNOV, a technology company that provides cybersecurity and eDiscovery services.

Workshops focused on understanding sound systems, in-depth audio issues, website tools, tech staff positions, social media help, live-streaming, and church network security.

Chin, who led workshops on sound systems, views technology “as an amazing tool which God has provided for use as a force multiplier for the spread of the gospel. Tragically, what should be a help to ministry is too often a distraction instead.” His goal is to “bring the same level of technical excellence found in secular productions such as Broadway musicals to the infinitely more important arena of church services and events.”

Porter is in charge of social media, live-streaming, and website design at his church. “Social media,” he says, “has become a big focus for me over the last few years because I think God is giving us a way into people’s homes like never before. Not just in our cities but all over the world.”

Participants said the conference was enjoyable and helpful, with one saying, “I was thankful for the opportunity to hear from others in audiovisual ministry. It gave me some ideas and things to think about.”

Brown moderated a closing session that invited participants to ask questions and share their favorite ministry resources.

“With some great feedback from our attendees,” Brown says, “we are planning on making the 2015 conference even better.”