Included below are special projects for churches and ministry groups. Contact me to learn more.
I've created a very special All Church Retreat called, "The Blueprint for Living," a 3-day retreat that focuses on the essentials of Church life and how we can lay the right foundation, fill our house with good things, create a doorway for others to enter, and plant a garden of grace to nurture the members to grow closer to one another and to God. Here is a brief outline of the retreat...
10:00 – 10:45 AM – Arrival and Registration
10:45 – 11:15 AM – Community Building Activity – “Treasure Hunt”
11:15 – 11:30 AM – Praise and Worship
11:30 AM – 12:15 PM – Session One – “Laying the Foundation”
12:30 – 1:15 PM – Lunch
1:15 – 5:30 – Free Time/Planned Activities
1:30 – 2:00 PM – Children’s Treasure Hunt
5:30 – 6:15 PM – Dinner
6:30 – 7:45 PM – Session Two – “The Body & the Spirit: Walking with the Lord”
8:00 – 9:30 PM – Snack Shop Open/Coffee House
9:30 PM – Evening Activities/Youth Sharing Session
10:00 PM – Quiet Time/Games
Early – 7:45 AM – “Morning Hike”/Devotions
8:00 – 8:30 AM – Breakfast
8:30 – 9:00 AM – Devotional/Community Building Activity
8:45 – 9:15 AM – Praise and Worship
9:15 – 11:15 – Session Three – “Opening to the Spirit, Our Joy, Our Tears”
11:30 AM – Baptism
11:45 AM – 12:30 PM – Lunch
12:30 – 5:00 PM – Free Time/Men/Women/Youth Specific Planned Activities
5:00 – 5:45 PM – Dinner
6:00 – 7:30 PM – Session Four – “The Prayer of Going Forth and Seeking Within”
8:00 – 9:00 PM – Campfire Activity – Reconciliation/Celebration Theme
9:30 PM – Evening Activities/Youth Planned Activities
10:00 PM – Quiet Time/Games
8:00 – 8:30 AM – Breakfast/Communion Service
8:45 – 9:15 AM – Session Five (Closing Thoughts) – “The Fragrance of Grace”
9:15 – 9:45 AM – Gift Celebration (Variety Show and Planned dramas)
9:45 – 10:00 AM – Video/Slide Celebration
10:00 – 10:30 AM – Praise and Worship/Benediction
10:30 AM – 12:30 PM – Free Time
12:30 – 1:00 PM – Lunch
1:00 PM – 3:00 PM – Pack Up and Departure
I've also been asked to lead special days of reflection for church ministers, offering them some reflections and encouragement on the important work they do for their congregations. Below is a sample outline of a reflection day...
Reflection Day for Church Ministers- Schedule of the Day
12:45 p.m. - Arrival, Fellowship
1:00 p.m. - Outline of the Day/Opening Prayer
1:05 p.m. - Presentation One - “Our Identity in Christ: Power in Weakness” -
This presentation will look at who we are in Christ and who we are without him. It will challenge each person to consider what kind of commitment to follow Jesus he/she has made.
Activity Sheets for Presentation One -
- “Examining My Faith” (Discussion questions)
- “Who I Am In Jesus Christ” (Reflection sheet based on Scripture)
- “Life in the Flesh, Life According to the Flesh, Life in the Spirit” (Scripture)
2:30 p.m. - Presentation Two - “Discipleship and Ministry” -
Here, we examine what Scripture says about ministering to family, friends and others. We will also consider the experiences of those present and offer suggestions for witnessing and ministering to others.
Activity Sheets for Presentation Two -
- “Being a Disciple” (Scripture)
- “My Ministry Experience” - (Questions for reflection and discussion)
- “Helping Skills” (Informational sheet)
- “Dealing With Issues of Pride in My Life” (Checklist and reflection)
- “Overcoming Satan’s Lies and Walking in the Spirit” (Scripture)
3:30 p.m. - Presentation Three - “The Mission Church” -
This final presentation will lead into discussions and brainstorming about possible directions for the ministries (training, spiritual enrichment, expanding the ministry, moving in new directions, etc.).
Activity Sheets for Presentation Three -
- “Being Church” (Brainstorming Exercise)
- “Affirmations” (Exercise to be shared at Closing Worship)
- “Doctrinal Affirmation” (Scripturally-based commitment prayer for closing)
4:15 p.m. - Closing Worship/Fellowship
This will involve music, spontaneous prayers of petition and healing, affirmations for one another and a fellowship meal at the end.
Explanation of the Reflection Day Components
Purpose of the Day - This is a time for serious and prayerful reflection on three things:
- Our relationship with Jesus Christ and what believing in him asks of us…
- Our relationship to our ministries and what the cost of being a disciple really is…
- Our relationship to our community and how we can build the Kingdom here…
As the participants share themselves throughout the day, they will be supporting one another, growing in their awareness of how important their ministries are to the church and committing themselves to taking greater responsibility for bringing Christ to others through these ministries.
Presentation One, “Our Identity in Christ: Power in Weakness,” is meant to focus on the most fundamental message of Christianity - that we must believe in Jesus to be saved - and express the depth of God’s mercy in giving us His Son. The participants will look at all the wonderful promises God has given us in Jesus, and take time to do a self-examination to see where there are areas of pride that keep them from living free in Christ.
The “Examining My Faith” sheet has general questions on faith to spark discussion and help the participants to see that they have a responsibility to own their faith. The other two sheets use Scripture to support our identity in Christ and what it means to walk in the Spirit and not the flesh.
Presentation Two, “Discipleship and Ministry,” will look more specifically at what it takes to minister in the church. Many times, people see their ministry as some sort of privilege duty rather than an act of loving service to the Body. The participants will learn about what God’s Word has to say on being a servant before sharing their own experiences of ministry with others.
The sheets, “Being a Disciple,” “My Ministry Experience” and “Christian Helping Skills” will help the participants to examine what it means to minister to others one-to-one. The “Dealing With Issues of Pride in My Life” sheet is a simple checklist with a prayer to help the participants renounce those areas where Satan has gained a stronghold in their lives, and recommit themselves to Jesus. The other two sheets are Scriptural resources to help ground all this in God’s Word.
Presentation Three, “The Mission Church,” will challenge the participants to move beyond their particular ministries to see their connection to the larger church and its mission to win souls for Jesus Christ. Often, people can become content with ministries that “feel good” and programs that “get the job done.” The participants will be asked to take things a step further.
The “Being Church” sheet is a general brainstorming exercise to get the participants thinking beyond the program. The participants will use the “Affirmations” sheet to build up one another in their ministries. Both will be used as part of the closing worship. The “Doctrinal Affirmation” sheet is a sort of expanded creed, which calls for a deeper commitment to the Christian faith and the work of God’s people. It is used to close the last presentation and set up for worship.
The closing will involve spontaneous prayer, Scripture, music, sharing, affirmations and fellowship. It will have both structure and freedom to allow the Spirit to move in the group.
The Sherlock Holmes Mystery Dinner Experience immerses the audience into a world of intrigue and mystery. They are the guests at Oakhurst Manor, witnesses to a crime, the theft of Lady Oakhurst's priceless necklace.
Enter Sherlock Holmes, the famous detective, and his faithful friend, Dr. Watson. Together these two will take on the case and examine all the clues to try to spot the true thief. Everyone's a suspect and with the help of the guests, the sleuth from 22B Baker Street may just be able to solve this most baffling case.
Included in this experience is a full script with templates for sign ups, cast assignments, invitations and "Mystery Cards" to help the audience solve the case. The "staff" of Oakhurst Manor are the actors in the play and perform the play in between serving the guests their dinner. The audience members who correctly guess the true thief can be awarded a prize or certificate.
I will work with the cast members and support team to set up and carry out the Mystery Dinner. This project can be used by youth ministry drama teams and ministry groups as a fundraiser.
Using audio and video to chronicle an event, promote a program and share a vision is powerful. It isn’t just recording an experience that is important, but getting to the heart of what that experience can teach us. The way the scene is shot, the commentary and copy used, the music and sounds in the background, all serve to turn an ordinary recording into a lasting memory. The power of audio and video lies in how it evokes emotion, deeper understanding, a drive to action and inner transformation. From start to finish, the Making Memories service will work to put together an audio or a video that will speak to the heart of all who experience it.
Creating a Video
Here is a description of the process of putting together a video and some of the uses for ministries...
Some Suggestions for Video Projects...
Website Content. Church websites need videos to help enhance web pages and draw others to visit. These can include pastor introductions, member testimonies, and information about the Church and what it offers.
Through the Years. This is a way for a church to celebrate its history from the beginning to the present, set up in a slideshow or documentary form.
Thank You Pastor. A Church can honor a pastor or faithful ministry partner for his or her years of faithful service to the church by putting together a special video of memories and testimonials.
So Long Video. It's always sad to see a beloved ministry partner move on. The Church can offer a special farewell to this faithful servant, with warm and heart-felt well-wishes, friendly stories and maybe even a few light-hearted jabs thrown in for fun.
Video Documentary. Churches take missions trips and sponsor ministry events. What would be better than to document and celebrate the work of the church in reaching out and ministering to the needs of others.
Video Time Capsule. A church group can come together and share their thoughts as their recollections are captured on video and edited with pictures to create a video snapshot of a special time in the church's life.
Blending. Old video can be blended with new, and pictures (scanned or from picture files) can be turned into slide shows and spaced throughout a video with music using fades and transitions.
Overlay. A step up from simple fading, videos and pictures can be overlaid over the original video adding a special look and a special mood to the video.
Copy and Narration. Descriptions, words of warmth and even humorous lines can be added at appropriate places in the video. Mark can narrate sections or record words of affection or stories from you and add it to the video as well.
Highlight Footage. Special "summary" video can be created from the original and added in special sections to the DVD. This can include shots at the same location at different times, humorous scenes, or simply a quick look at what is to come.
Music. Whether for older video converted from home movies or as a special touch to a slide show, special songs and appropriate background music can be imported into the footage for added enhancement.
Frames and Special Looks. The video and slides can be placed within decorative frames, and special images or speech bubbles can be placed over the video to create a humorous or sentimental look.
A Look at the Art of Documentary Videography
Creating a good documentary or video story requires a blending of technical skill and artistry. Anyone can make a video, but few can capture the soul behind the images. Below is a brief look at how Mark puts together a story or documentary.
Establishing relationships. It begins by having a real conversation with those involved to understand their wishes for the video and to get into the heart of how they would like people to react emotionally when the video is over.
Creating a theme. Next it's time to put together a theme – a mood, a message, a look – for the video, considering not only what, but how things should be said. Also under consideration her are general camera angles, lighting, music in the background etc.
Making a storyline. Then it is time to flesh out how the project flow from beginning to end, while remaining open to making changes as it comes together. The theme is woven into the storyline and plans out how the story will unfold.
Writing the initial copy. Now comes questions or ideas for interviews, as well as initial narration to help set up the camera shots. This is drawn from the theme and storyline and considers how the words will set the mood of the production.
Gathering footage. Interviews, video and stills are collected, along with archived materials for the project. There can also be slides from the still images to fit into the project. This material will be edited down later.
Coordinating video footage with slides. After this, the video and slides are blended together as the raw material is placed into the editor and a rough draft of the material is fleshed out based on the initial outline and narration.
Adding in the final copy. Once the scenes are in place, the final produced is mastered with the final narration and music and the project is done!
Below are some examples of video consulting projects...