Sermon by Phone Evaluated for Smaller Churches

How can your church benefit from Sermon by Phone. How can it help your ministry? What are its’ limits?

Image by Kay Lenze, Sourced from Pixabay

Problem with the Online Digital Divide

Your Elderly members are missing out on your online worship services.

Challenge in Reaching Your Elderly Members

Online worship services are great for members who cannot make it to the in-person worship services. Yet, it is not the ultimate solution for those on the other side of the technology gap. Only if we could get the audio signal to them by the traditional telephone we could include everybody.

Sermon by Phone Answers the Challenge

Have you heard of the acronym K.I.S.S. – it stands for Keep It Simple Stupid … if the word “Stupid” offends you, you can substitute “silly.”

Well, SermonByPhone seems to have taken the K.I.S.S. approach when it comes to delivering audio sermons over the phone. It’s clear in the name, in the website, and in the feature set.

Let’s take a look.

Sermon By Phone gives you a dedicated phone number that plays the audio you upload week to week. When you sign up, you’ll enter your preferred area code, and they say within six hours, you’ll hear back with a phone number assigned to your account. I’m not sure how that works if you order on the weekends or late at night.

The only other option you need to work out is your monthly allotment of minutes. The default minimum is a basic monthly fee, which offers you a “bucket” of 500 minutes of streaming audio. Now, remember, that’s total minutes spread across however many callers you have. So, if you have 50 people call in, that gives you 10 minutes of content to share per month (not week). Since most of us have new content weekly, and the average sermon is at least 30 minutes, that means you can reach between three and four callers per month for that minimum fee.

So what happens if you go over? There is a per-minute charge that could go by pretty fast. One other curious note on the website is that 50+ callers can call in simultaneously and not get a busy signal.

I’m not exactly sure what happens at 60 callers or 100 … It’s also important to note that SermonByPhone is not LIVE. You can only upload audio files.

And it does not dial OUT like phone live streaming.

There is no archive of previous recordings either. So they really are Keeping It Simple.

March 16th ...

New research showing 50% of Americans can't watch videos online discussed.

Need help reaching your offline audiences with your live stream?

"Faithful saints can still enjoy church. One listener in assisted living has her friends join her every Sunday. Others who cannot drive can still make it to church. Our audience is growing, and Gospel is not being hindered."

— Marty Swinehart, Grace Cathedral

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With PhoneLiveStreaming you will be able to

  1. Reach the elderly
  2. Serve the poor
  3. Include the rural
  4. Broadcast to those on the go
  5. Integrate with existing video streaming solutions, such as OBS, Resi, BoxCast, ReStream, Castr, OneStream, vMix, Wirecast, and others

“PhoneLiveStreaming has expanded Mendocino County Board of Supervisors' ability to be transparent by providing a real-time telephonic meeting streaming option to our rural residents.”

— Lindsey Daugherty, Senior Deputy Clerk of the Board, County of Mendocino (California)