9 things to know about Livestreaming via Periscope

It has the potential to enhance the communications options of churches of any size; increasing the reach of ministry events in real time.  Recently, I used it for an Anglican event at Asbury Seminary, and learned a few of the advantages and “gotchas” first hand.  The following is a brief review of the app and a guide to avoiding some beginner mistakes.

  1. It’s Easy to Use.  Really easy. I signed up in 5 minutes, pushed the “play” button on my phone, and we were livestreaming the chapel service without a WiFi connection.
  2. It’s Easy for Visitors to Find.  During the sign-up process you are given a url that you can share, other users can follow your stream and receive notifications when you are live, and you will instantly show up on Periscope’s livestream map. It integrates seamlessly with Twitter, which is the largest event-driven social media platform.
  3. Picture Quality is Adequate. It’s not great, but that’s not its niche.  Periscope isn’t attempting to replace high-quality streaming services, it’s providing more of a “man on the street” kind of experience to the user.
  4. Remember Your Audio Source.  While the picture may be capturing your subject 50 feet away, the microphone is in the palm of your hand… and you’re livestreaming.  Let the reader understand.  Be aware of the ambient noise and the conversations around you.
  5.  
  6. Watch out for Data Charges. Periscope doesn’t require a WiFi connection so if your cellular signal is strong enough, you can live stream anywhere.  This is a key feature.  The downside is that you can burn through your phone’s monthly data package in a hurry if you aren’t using WiFi.
  7. You Can’t Edit…Anything. As soon as you push the “play” button the title of the livestream is set.  This meant that in my rush to go live, my first 2 clips were called “untitled” and this couldn’t be edited after the fact.  This is typical of the app.  As easy as it is to use, there are some really basic editing and customization functions that just aren’t there.
  8. Video Remains Available for 24 Hours. Your video can be viewed on Periscope for exactly 24 hours following the event.  After 24 hours, the video is automatically deleted.
  9. Or Less. Perhaps that clip didn’t go so well.  No problem.  You can delete a video with a swipe of the finger.
  10. Save to Phone: When you stop recording you will be asked if you want to save the video to your phone.  The answer should usually be “yes.”  You can always delete it later, but this is another shortcoming of the app that can come back to haunt you.  If you don’t choose “yes” on that one occasion (or as a default setting) it becomes very difficult to save the video.

Conclusion: It’s easy to use, and it’s free.  That’s a pretty good combination.  This app has alot of potential for church communicators who want to help folks connect with their events in real time.  A church plant could use a member’s iPhone to stream the sermon, a Bible study group could use their church’s stream to allow traveling members to listen in (or watch the video later in the day), or the music ministry could give folks a taste of what they are working on for the future.  Like all social media tools, there are potential pitfalls, but there is real benefit that makes this app one worth considering.

You can follow The Anglican Church in North America on Periscope at: https://www.periscope.tv/anglican

If you or your church are on Periscope please let me know at: Andrew.gross@anglicanchurch.net

The Rev. Canon Andrew Gross
Canon for Communications and Media Relations

Reflections on the Anglican Family Symposium

By Julia-Marie Halderman

The energy and passion in the room were tangible on October 15-17, 2015, in Plano TX, as more than 80 participants gathered at Christ Church Plano for the Anglican Family Symposium. While there was much diversity of ministry and professional roles among the participants, there was also unity in our purpose—to explore the role and revival of the domestic church and family catechesis in contemporary society.

The symposium centered on four keynote speakers, five break-out sessions, roundtable conversations, and facilitated group discussions, as well as daily morning and evening prayer.

The inadequacies of the current curricular-driven, age-segregated, programatic models of Christian education were acknowledged. There was a renewed sense of urgency to articulate a hope-filled, counter-cultural, life-giving Biblical theology of marriage, family, and singleness to an increasingly broken, fragmented, and lost society.


How can we as a corporate church, communicate who we are, who God is, and what gives our lives, work, and relationships meaning?

The implications of the prevailing model of the Church as a purveyor of spiritual goods and services were addressed, along with the challenges of changing the culture towards a renewed vision and reclamation of authentic discipleship. This will be a long walk, with no quick fixes or tidy overnight solutions.

The need to model healthy, redemptive relationships and marriages as God’s solution to the isolated brokenness, egocentricity and hyper-distracted lives of today’s adults, youth, and children was also addressed. The self-satisfying temptations are as much an enemy of the Gospel as in Paul’s day (2 Timothy 3), and the church must provide an effective response.

The significant points that emerged through the weekend to guide us forward included seeking creative and contextual ways to:

• Be unashamedly and explicitly grounded in the Gospel and Good News of Christ, with a solid foundation of biblical literacy;

• Be intentionally relational and inter-generational both in worship and discipleship by equipping parents, grandparents, godparents and sponsors to both tend to their own spiritual needs and pass that faith on to those in their family, and allowing children to grow up in the church as full participants, formed by the liturgy and worship;

• Recapture the ethos of what the symposium called “domestic church” as a place for discipleship, mission, healing, and reconciliation within the extended church family; and

• Be missional and keep our eyes on the goal (Hebrews 12) by investing in healthy family and personal relationships (not as an ends, but means). While essential, we cannot stop at brotherly love, but rather seek to push on to our conformity to the image of Christ, demonstrating the sacrificial love of the Gospel (2 Peter 1).


Where do we go from here?

In the coming weeks, AnglicanFamily.com will post the videos of the keynote speakers, along with summaries and resources from the breakout sessions. Additionally, the Family Catechesis working group, along with the Catechesis Resource working group, will begin to post blog articles and materials for parents, parishes and dioceses, clergy and laity, to help resource and equip as we continue the conversation.

Planning for the Anglican Family Symposium Fall 2016 is already underway, with more details coming soon!


Julia-Marie Halderman, PhD, serves as a member of the Family Catechesis Group.

Reflections on the Anglican Family Symposium

The energy and passion in the room were tangible on October 15-17, 2015, in Plano TX, as more than 80 participants gathered at Christ Church Plano for the Anglican Family Symposium. While there was much diversity of ministry and professional roles among the participants, there was also unity in our purpose—to explore the role and revival of the domestic church and family catechesis in contemporary society.

The symposium centered on four keynote speakers, five break-out sessions, roundtable conversations, and facilitated group discussions, as well as daily morning and evening prayer.

The inadequacies of the current curricular-driven, age-segregated, programatic models of Christian education were acknowledged. There was a renewed sense of urgency to articulate a hope-filled, counter-cultural, life-giving Biblical theology of marriage, family, and singleness to an increasingly broken, fragmented, and lost society.

How can we as a corporate church, communicate who we are, who God is, and what gives our lives, work, and relationships meaning?

The implications of the prevailing model of the Church as a purveyor of spiritual goods and services were addressed, along with the challenges of changing the culture towards a renewed vision and reclamation of authentic discipleship. This will be a long walk, with no quick fixes or tidy overnight solutions.

The need to model healthy, redemptive relationships and marriages as God’s solution to the isolated brokenness, egocentricity and hyper-distracted lives of today’s adults, youth, and children was also addressed. The self-satisfying temptations are as much an enemy of the Gospel as in Paul’s day (2 Timothy 3), and the church must provide an effective response.

The significant points that emerged through the weekend to guide us forward included seeking creative and contextual ways to:

  • Be unashamedly and explicitly grounded in the Gospel and Good News of Christ, with a solid foundation of biblical literacy;
  • Be intentionally relational and inter-generational both in worship and discipleship by equipping parents, grandparents, godparents and sponsors to both tend to their own spiritual needs and pass that faith on to those in their family, and allowing children to grow up in the church as full participants, formed by the liturgy and worship;
  • Recapture the ethos of what the symposium called “domestic church” as a place for discipleship, mission, healing, and reconciliation within the extended church family; and
  • Be missional and keep our eyes on the goal (Hebrews 12) by investing in healthy family and personal relationships (not as an ends, but means). While essential, we cannot stop at brotherly love, but rather seek to push on to our conformity to the image of Christ, demonstrating the sacrificial love of the Gospel (2 Peter 1).

Where do we go from here?
In the coming weeks, AnglicanFamily.com will post the videos of the keynote speakers, along with summaries and resources from the breakout sessions. Additionally, the Family Catechesis working group, along with the Catechesis Resource working group, will begin to post blog articles and materials for parents, parishes and dioceses, clergy and laity, to help resource and equip as we continue the conversation.

Planning for the Anglican Family Symposium Fall 2016 is already underway, with more details coming soon!

By Julia-Marie Halderman
Julia-Marie Halderman, PhD, serves as a member of the Family Catechesis Group.