640 – Zoom Done Right

This week on WELSTech we talk about using Zoom video conferencing in ministry. The 2020 Gospel Outreach with Media Conference kicks off with some very interesting presentations, WELS Congregational Services has a brand new Evangelism kit to share, and we explore new software and app capabilities to make your ministry and life easier.

The discussion

Unexpected ministry platform – When we started the year of podcasting there’s no way we could have predicted the exponential usage of Zoom and other video conferencing platforms in ministry. Martin details best practices for using Zoom.

The interview

Zoom first-hand – Pastor Philip Casmer from Christ the Lord, Brookfield, WI shares his experience using Zoom for Bible class.

Picks of the week

Ministry resource

Visit the Gospel Outreach with Media 2020 Conference (gowm.org), now through November 9, for interesting approaches to sharing the Good News including …

Community feedback

WELS now

Watch the recent Together video update and check out new resources from WELS Congregational Services

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Rebranding and Atomic Habits – Make It Attractive (chapters 8-10)

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639 – Make It Obvious

Tune in for 52 minutes of WELSTech goodness including great tips on habit forming as well as special guest insight into the tech behind world mission work. There’s also recycling tips for old devices, Bible commentary discounts, church WordPress themes, and the perfect YouTube channel for budding videographers.

The discussion

Implementation and stacking – Martin and Sallie continue their book discussion of Atomic Habits by James Clear, looking at starting new habits, motivation, and the secret of self-control (chapters 4-7).

The interview

Pastor Paul Nitz recently returned from 25+ years of service as missionary to God’s people in Malawi and central Africa. Hear about his new role in World Missions and the tech that makes it all happen!

BONUS: Check out Pastor Nitz’s OneNote template for meetings for ideas on how templates can improve your work processes. Pastor Nitz writes, “I create the template in Excel and paste it in. I always choose to put in a page color to make the tables pop out. That, for me, takes care of the one thing about OneNote I really DON’T like, the huge colorless blank canvass effect.”

Picks of the week

Ministry resource

James Clear’s 3-2-1 Thursday newsletter

Community feedback

WordPress Themes for Churches – Google group discussion

WELS now

Looking for the perfect Pastor Appreciation gift? Visit Northwestern Publishing House for 25% off Bible Commentaries through October 15.

Next time

Video ministry and Atomic Habits – Make It Attractive (chapters 8-10)

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638 – Thoughts On Virtual Learning…Free Of Charge

A new era of WELSTech has arrived as we welcome not one, but two classroom technology correspondents to the guest host chairs on the same episode! We’re talking hybrid education along with picks of the week, community feedback, and all the other WELSTech goodness we can pack into our time together.

The discussion

New school year, new challenges – This season on WELSTech we thought we’d double the fun for edtech discussion episodes by inviting both Rachel Feld, Director of Academic Computing at Martin Luther College, and Jason Schmidt, Instructional Technology Coach for Oconto Falls School District, to join Martin and Sallie on the same episodes.

Today we talk about the challenges and opportunities which are evident in classrooms this school year because of the pandemic. Jason and Rachel share tools for formative assessment which is important for gauging learning comprehension in normal situations and is magnified in hybrid/virtual learning situations.

Picks of the week

Ministry resource

Sunday School At Home with Christ Light from Northwestern Publishing House (NPH)

Community feedback

WELS now

Sign up for Marriage Moments, weekly videos with discussion ideas highlighting a Biblical marriage thought. Additional details are available here.

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We’re back in two weeks with the 1st law of Atomic Habits plus an interview.

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637 – Atomic Habits

This week, WELSTech starts fresh for the 2020-21 podcast season with a revised show lineup, a great interview on 21st century catechism, a new book discussion, and a couple of hardware picks of the week. There’s also community discussions around Instagram for ministry, Google for Education application requirements, and document camera recommendations. We cap it off with a celebration of 100 years of Campus Ministry!

The discussion

Back to the books – Martin and Sallie kickoff a new book discussion of Atomic Habits by James Clear with a look at the mathematics of compounding tiny changes over time to reach the tipping point and benefit from the exponential “power of latent potential.”

The interview

Catechism instruction – Pastor Paul Waldschmidt from Peace Lutheran Church in Hartford, WI recently taught a summer course at Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary titled Educational Technology for the Catechism Classroom. He chats with Martin and Sallie about the methods and tools he implemented in order to foster the 4Cs identified as 21st century skills – create, communicate, collaborate, and critical thinking – in his classroom.

Picks of the week

Ministry resource

Atomic Habits free resources

Community feedback

WELS now

WELS Campus Ministries celebrates their 100 year anniversary

Next time

We talk edtech with a pair of guest hosts – Rachel Feld and Jason Schmidt!

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636 – HR & A Pandemic

On this episode of WELSTech we wrap up our summer look at ministry across the synod during the pandemic by talking with WELS Human Resources Director Dennis Maurer. We also discuss NPH’s new “at-home Sunday School” program. Google extensions and add-ons shine in the “Picks of the week” segment, and WELSTech listeners have lots to say about social media for schools, and more!

The interview and discussion:

Pandemic protocols at the CMM – WELS Director of Human Resources Dennis Maurer talks with Martin and Sallie about the policies and procedures which are in place at the WELS Center for Mission and Ministry (CMM).

Sunday School at home – New from Northwestern Publishing House (NPH) are resources for doing Sunday School from home using Christ-Light materials and free, age-appropriate video lessons by experienced WELS teachers.

Picks of the week:

Community feedback:

Featured videos/online course:

How to use Choice Eliminator add-on for Google Forms

Next time:

WELSTech goes back to the books with a kickoff discussion of Atomic Habits by James Clear.

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635 – PR & A Pandemic

This week on WELSTech we hear from the Martin Luther College Director of Public Relations about the challenges and changes to communication during the pandemic. In addition, there’s a wide variety of tech tools and tips that may benefit your ministry including safely back to school webinars, Gmail organization, Bitmoji classroom images, and farewell to classic Google Sites. Tune in and turn it up!

The interview and discussion:

Communicating to a college community – Bill Pekrul, Director of Public Relations at Martin Luther College (MLC), talks with Martin and Sallie about the levels and multiple channels of communication they utilize. Bill also shares tips that congregations and schools can use as they devise communication plans.

Additional examples to consider from MLC communication:

Picks of the week:

Community feedback:

Featured videos/online course:

MLC Update

Next time:

Summer interviews on pandemic ministry continue, next time with Dennis Maurer, WELS Director of Human Resources.

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634 – Technology vs Pandemic

Tune in to this week’s WELSTech to learn about a new tech tool to check temperatures before admitting people to your buildings for church and school. We also share googly picks, tips for content filtering and worship projection, and COVID-19 resources from WELS.

The interview and discussion:

Thermal Scanner – Art Flater, WELS member and owner of Central Office Systems, shares a timely tech innovation, the Pyrexia Kiosk, which uses thermal scanning technology to check body temperature before allowing admittance to a building.

Picks of the week:

Community feedback:

Featured videos/online course:

Members of St Mark, Green Bay, pray for police

Next time:

Summer interviews on pandemic ministry continue

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633 – Music Ministry in a Pandemic

This week the WELSTech featured interview focuses on pandemic music ministry blessings and challenges. Martin and Sallie geek out a bit with their picks of the week, the WELSTech community buzz is around Chromebooks and texting solutions, and we share details about an upcoming “Back to School” webinar by WELS Lutheran Schools and Christian Family Solutions.

The interview and discussion:

Making Worship Music from a Distance – Lisa Uttech, Music Director for Christ the Lord, Brookfield, WI, and Kristen Koepsell, Music Coordinator for Cross of Christ, Boise, ID, share their experiences with congregation and school music during the COVID-19 event.

Picks of the week:

Community feedback:

Featured videos/online course:

Hands on with PowerToys for Windows 10

Next time:

Summer interviews on pandemic ministry continue

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632 – Google Just Wants To Save You Some Money

On WELSTech this week we talk with a long-time WELSTech contributor about his pandemic experience. In addition, we have hardware recommendations, an exciting virtual conference to share, “free” items for schools, and highlights from Apple’s World Wide Developer’s Conference.

The interview and discussion:

Coast to coast – Martin and Sallie chat with WELS educator Perry Lund regarding his pandemic experience in church and high school classroom.

Picks of the week:

Community feedback:

Featured videos/online course:

Apple WWDC 2020 keynote in 18 minutes

Next time:

Summer interviews on pandemic ministry continue

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631 – What Does Church Look Like?

The WELSTech Summer interview series kicks off today. We’re taking a look at the many faces of ministry during a pandemic from across the synod in an effort to spark ideas and encourage excellence in all ministry, whether in good times or challenging times. There’s also some awesome community feedback on everything from smart tech to VBS and Summer Sunday school to free Bible images.

The interview and discussion:

Unique ministry ideas – Pastor Rob Guenther from St. John’s Lutheran Church in New Ulm, MN joins Martin and Sallie to share his ministry experience during and beyond COVID-19.

Picks of the week:

Community feedback:

Featured videos/online course:

Check out the unique video ministry experience from St John’s, New Ulm, MN, where they spliced the current readings and sermon into full church worship recordings from 2019, making the safer-at-home worship experience feel a bit more normal.

Next time:

Summer interviews on pandemic ministry continue

Get involved: