Software can be intimidating. Not only is it often expensive, it can also be difficult to learn and understand. However, with today’s technology it is possible for any average Joe to learn the basic functions of software. With a little time, you can learn to create quality graphics, presentations, sounds, and even videos. Here are several softwares & applications that can help you in your Church. Some of these are free, some are not. But each of these can be a great help as you plan worship, create media, and use technology to advance the Kingdom of God.
Audacity.sourceforge.net is a FREE sound editing program. You can use this software to do just about anything with sound. With Audacity you can record, edit clips, shorten tracks, combine tracks, make click tracks, change the key of a song, add effects, and much more. It is available for MAC and PC and you can easily export the file you are working on to an MP3 with this encoder. Here is a complete list of features Audacity offers. Download it today for FREE and enjoy!
Blender.org is a FREE 3D content creation suite. This software has incredible features and can make very professional artwork, animations, and even movies. There are plenty of tutorial videos to help you get started. It is available for download for MAC and PC.
Easyslides.com is a simple option for lyric presentation. This FREE software has a simple user interface and has the necessary features to show lyrics and videos on screens. It is only available for PC.
Exaltnow.com is a PowerPoint plugin that will allow you to play Motion Backgrounds behind your lyrics. This is a much needed feature for PowerPoint and because the majority of Churches use PowerPoint for lyric display, ExaltNow is worth checking out. It is $69.99 and comes with FREE media from Sharefaith.com.
Google.com/docs is another FREE resource you can use in your church or ministry. GoogleDocs is a word processing application – similar to Microsoft Word. The big difference is there is no software to download – this application is entirely Web-based. So if you have an internet connection you can use GoogleDocs to create letters, presentations, spreadsheets and collaborate with your staff – all online – all for FREE.
Google.com/calendar is a FREE Web-based Calendar application. With an internet connection you can create unlimited Calendars and schedules. Share them with others, embed them to your website and sync them to your phone. Make sure everyone is on the same schedule with Google Calendar.
Gimp.org is a very sophisticated Photo editing software. It has many of the same features as Photoshop with one major difference – it’s FREE! It works on both MAC and PC. You can crop, enhance, retouch, edit and more with this great FREE photo editor.
Handbrake.fr is a FREE DVD ripping software. This software is useful for getting clips and segments of movies off a DVD in order to play it smoothly from your presentation software (i.e. Propresenter, EasyWorship, MediaShout). Ripping a DVD will allow you to keep a smooth flow from element to element in your service. You don’t have to switch sources on your projector or endure that awkward pause when your waiting for the sound guy to press play! Handbrake works on both MAC and PC and is completely FREE. (This software is NOT intended for you to illegally distribute DVD’s – please obey all copyright laws.)
Journeyed.com is not a software – but a company that sells software at heavily discounted prices. It is geared toward schools and non-profits. They have all kinds of software for MAC and PC – Microsoft Office, Adobe Suite, Finale and more. Before you buy from Office Depot check here for up to 60% off.
Kompozer.net is a website building software. It uses WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) Technology. It works on both MAC and PC. It is very user friendly – helping anyone build their own website with a little time. Oh… I almost forgot – it’s FREE! Download it today.
Lightworksbeta.com If I were a Windows user I think I would use this all the time. It is a FREE video editing software. It has some really nice features and capabilities and from the looks of it, can rival any major video editing software. They are working on a MAC version that should be released soon. This would be a great resource for you to use in preparing videos and media – especially if you’re on a tight budget.
Openlp.org is a FREE lyric projection software. If you can’t spend the money on Propresenter or EasyWorship, this might be a good starting point to project lyrics and media on your screens. It works on MAC and PC and they have a good support section online.
Openoffice.org is similar to Microsoft Office – they have programs that are comparable to Word, Excel and Powerpoint. It works on both MAC and PC and here’s the best part – it’s FREE!
Planningcenteronline.com has revolutionized the way I plan worship and communicate to our teams more than any other resource. Plan, organize and communicate to everyone on your team in half the time. With Planning Center your band and praise team will be prepared, your tech team will be informed, and you will be happy. I cannot say enough about PlanningCenterOnline. If you don’t use it, start today. They have a FREE version and paid versions based on storage and users. You will love PlanningCenterOnline – I have no doubt.
Renewedvision.com is a company that sells tremendous software – like Propresenter and ProVideoPlayer and all the bells and whistles that help to make Propresenter the top lyric and media projection software in the world (IMO). Although it is a little pricey, the capabilities of this software are incredible and you will not be disappointed in its performance. Purchase a site license and you can use it on both MAC and PC in unlimited rooms throughout your facility.
Sweeterrhythm.com sells a lyric and media projection software called Harmony. Harmony has simple features but comes with an easy to swallow price. It’s only $79.99 and works on both MAC and PC. You can download a FREE 30 day trial to test it out and they also have some tutorial videos to help you get started.
Thecountdowncreator.com is a very simple Windows-based Countdown creator software. Create your own countdowns with just a few clicks. It costs $34.95 and you can use any media you have (images, videos) to create nice-looking countdowns.
Videomonkey.org is a FREE video conversion software for MAC. Don’t spend money on those expensive conversion suites. Videomonkey.org can handle almost any conversion you need. MOV, WMV, AVI, Quicktime, FFMPEG and more are all handled with this software. Download it for FREE here.
Worship-extreme.com is a FREE presentation software program. It promises to deliver HD videos and images to multiple outputs. It will of course handle your lyric presentation and can even incorporate PowerPoint files, Moving backgrounds, Microsoft Word, and much more. You can upgrade to Pro for only $29.95. Here is a list of all the features. It only works on PC but is worth checking out since it’s FREE!
Youversion.com is a FREE Bible application that is used by millions of people world-wide. You can download full versions of the Bible to your phone or tablet. Read the Bible (almost every version you can think of), create your own reading plans, get reminders to read, listen to the Bible, read study notes, share scripture with friends, and more – all for FREE.