We're spending the whole of 2016 in John's account of the life of Jesus, and on Sunday we're going to be looking at the second sign, or miracle, which John records - the healing of the officials son. As preparation it would be great for you to take time to read and meditate on the passage in advance which is John 4:43-54 - you can find it here.
I've been doing the preparation for it over the last couple of weeks and I'm really looking forward to speaking on an event which has so much to teach us about Jesus and how we relate to him. Please be there if you possibly can.
This Sunday is also going to be a first for us as we're going to 'live stream' the message, meaning that I'll preach it live at the 9am in Bracknell, and then the 10am in Sandhurst and the 11am in Bracknell will watch a recording of the 9am message. This is all with a view to us adding more sites, and Sandhurst at some point going to two morning meetings, both of which will make driving the preacher around impossible, as well as just a general feeling that preachers rushing around between sites isn't a good thing to do. Most Sunday's the plan is to have live preachers in all our sites, but for certain key Sunday's and as part of keeping us together as one church in multiple locations, we want to be able to 'live stream' between sites so we can all hear the same message from the same preacher.
I think for now on the Sunday's when we do choose to live stream the preacher will preach live in Bracknell at the 9am and 11am, but for this first Sunday I'm keen to go down to Sandhurst and see how it works, so we'll use the recorded message for the 11am in Bracknell too. Of course when Sandhurst has a 9am and 11am it would be possible when we 'live stream' for the preacher to be live in Sandhurst (or at any other sites we add) and be watched via video in Bracknell - again helping us to remember we're one church in multiple locations, not a hub in Bracknell with satellite congregations elsewhere.
All of this will also allow us to have video podcasts of the sermons as well as the audio we currently have - something quite a few people have been asking me for. We should also fairly soon be able to allow people to watch the sermon (and in time the rest of the meeting) live online, again something people have requested, although that doesn't mean you can just stay in bed on a Sunday morning and watch the meetings from home!
I want to say a huge thank you to all the tech team (most of whom are volunteers) who have been working incredibly hard to get all the technology and do all the training required to make this work. Please extend grace to them all if it doesn't quite work first time. All of this is an experiment and we'll look to shape and change what we do as we learn the lessons along the way.
See you Sunday,