Brian Bailey Preface to the Revised Edition


Great feedback on Scoble's recent post can be found within the comments section on his site. I thought I'd take a moment to offer my own perspective here.

One of the points I tried to make in my own summary of my time with Scoble, as well as his essay, was how much I appreciated his openness and neutrality regarding the church itself. It is a very difficult thing to look past personal opinion to see the methods and technology that may be of interest to Microsoft or other organizations. Most software developers have strong political and religious beliefs, but I believe that they are happy to have customers, and happy to hear that their tools are being used, even by organizations they don't personally support (within bounds, of course).

Let me speak very briefly regarding the comments on Fellowship. Obviously, our time with Scoble was short and entirely focused on how we use technology within the church. On the flip side of that, technology is not now and will never be the focus of the church. Technology is simply one element among many used to both reach people who would be unlikely to attend a traditional church and impact the people who are already here. But no one comes for the technology. They come for relationships, uncompromising biblical messages, children and youth programs, classes, home-based small groups, opportunities to serve, music and worship. Or, more simply, for the individual life change.

Every church is unique and must reflect its community to be relevant. The beauty of churches is there are so many different styles, sizes and presentations out there, but they all share one message. Similarly, every baseball stadium is a reflection of the architecture, geography, weather, and culture of the city it is in (with Pac Bell Park's wireless network being a perfect example), but between the lines, it's all just baseball.

Technology provides for fast and secure check-in for children, online registration for events, up-to-date information and communication, and engaging, first-class presentation. But if there was no substance, no 'there' there, then there wouldn't be a story worth telling.

And if I may borrow from Scoble's disclaimer: Brian Bailey works at Fellowship Church. Everything here, though, is his personal opinion and is not read or approved before it is posted.