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Monthly Enewsletter from Midnight Oil Productions
Vol 4, Number 8 | August 05
Ready for the Yule Yet?
Yule Prep
Growth Matters
Final Seminars of 2005
Thanksgiving Freebie
More Stories from You
Ready for the Yule Yet?

If your church is anything like our churches, Christmas planning is on the calendar about right now. Sometimes, it can be a challenge to tell the same story in fresh ways. So as you get together with your teammates (even if your teammates are you, yourself, and you), remember the growing Midnight Oil Christmas collection:

Follow the Star is a full-featured media resource including multiple versions of the video, looping backgrounds, still backgrounds, outreach and print materials, and much more, all with the same theme of the Christmas Star that descends over the manger, illuminating the birth of the Christ child. Click here to buy it now.

Rediscover Christmas encourages us to remember that before the usual secular stories and trappings of the holiday season, there was a baby in a manger. This full-featured media resource also includes multiple versions of the video, looping backgrounds, still backgrounds, outreach and print materials, and much more. Click here to buy it now.

Also, be on the lookout for a third full-featured media resource for Christmas yet to come this Christmas season!

Last, our Fresh Out of the Box Volume 3 is chock full of 10 complete Christmas worship services matched to cutting edge videos and graphics. To learn more about this unique resource and see clips, click here.

Growth Matters

We hope you’ve enjoyed our Design Matters series of articles. For the last 18 months we’ve been looking at some of the various ideas and techniques that go into creating powerful imagery for worship. Judging by the feedback we’ve received from you, it’s been helpful for many of you in your worship production. We hope so! Because we truly do believe that when it comes to the visual aspect of worship, design really does matter.

We’re wrapping up the series this month with a look toward your future as a designer when we say, Growth Matters. The principles covered in the previous articles give a solid foundation, but it’s not enough to stop there. There are additional steps you can take to ensure continued growth and development as your skills evolve.

To learn more about some of these steps, click here.

Also, be on the lookout! Next spring the book/DVD of Design Matters will be published by Abingdon Press. It will include more and expanded writings, extensive resource lists and aids, a number of exclusive tutorials, and much more.

Seminar Wrap up

2005 has been a great travel year for us. We’ve gotten chance to meet many of you for the first time and marvel at the work you do in ministry. In Florida, we were honored to teach 250 pastors alongside worship consultant Sally Morgenthaler and Willow Creek’s worship maven Nancy Beach. We led a special day long boot camp at the National Religious Broadcasters in Anaheim. We conducted workshops at the massive NAB Convention in Las Vegas. We taught at the first-ever Churchmedia.net convention in St Louis.

And, our favorite thing, we led a dozen Digital Storytellers seminars at churches around the continent. Each event is special as we get to meet people everywhere who have a passion to make the Gospel real to their own indigenous environment. God bless, grow and challenge the work that each of you do to communicate the Gospel using our culture’s visual language.

We’re wrapping up our 2005 travel season with 4 events in the next month. If you’ve never made it to an event, we’d love to have you. Click on a date to learn more.

Oct 29 Northwest Arkansas Digital Storytellers Seminar
Nov 11 Balt/DC metro Digital Storytellers Seminar
Nov 12 Central PA Digital Storytellers Seminar
Nov 19 Central IL Digital Storytellers Seminar
Anytime Your Computer Virtual Digital Storytellers Seminar
If you're still waiting for us to appear in your corner of the globe, then hang on. In our November newsletter we're going to reveal the first look at what may be our busiest travel year yet in 2006!
The Monthly Media Freebie - Thanksgiving Style

There’s something really biblical about the holiday of Thanksgiving. Feasts and banquets are a regular part of the biblical story. But it goes beyond just the food. Koinoinia is a Greek word that means fellowship. Its also how Luke describes the life of the early believers in Acts 2:42, “They devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer.”

Notice how Luke wrote, “the fellowship.” Placing a high value on hanging out—sitting around a table with family and friends, letting worries fall aside, enjoying good conversation, feeling secure, and belonging, is what the being a part of the body of Christ is all about.

Thanksgiving, at least how it’s supposed to be, embodies koinoinia to many people who otherwise would have no idea what it means to be a part of the body of Christ. Download our monthly media freebie here and use the upcoming holiday as an opportunity to invite others to join the table. (And for our friends up around the world, talking about the banquet table isn’t just limited to a holiday but can be a part of any meaningful weekend.) Enjoy.
Sparkign Worship Creativity

We continue to be edified by the emails you send us. Our most recent encouragement comes from Debbie Koske, who calls herself “a grateful fan” because of what happened to her after hearing our take on why and how to use screens in worship during a recent seminar. This is what she writes:

Hey guys,
Wanted to give you a quick update following the St. Louis Church Media Conference.
I came home with tons of ideas but not a lot of hope that we would be able to implement much. Our church isn’t known for planning ahead!!
However, I was asked to serve on an Evangelism Team and at one of our meetings, I was able to present the idea of metaphor. I asked everyone to complete the following sentence: “Evangelism is like a …..”
Inspiration fell upon us and we came up with an idea! Evangelism is like opening a door. Since we knew our pastor were going to do a five-week preaching series on evangelism, we felt it was worth our time to develop some material to support the theme and tie the five weeks together.
I used the sxc photo exchange to find several photos of doors, and designed a flyer for our bulletin. I found a great song background on the media exchange center on churchmedia.net and we called a member of our congregation who works at a lumber company and he found us eight doors for free! We put one up in each of our foyers and every week we’re adding a new one to our platform.

Last weekend, one of the pastors taught on Power Evangelism, and as a grand finale to his sermon he kicked down one of the doors. The crowd went wild. It was really fun.
Our pastors have been so pleased that our pastors asked us to reconvene our team and come up with a similar metaphor idea for the next series they’re doing on the commands of Jesus to the church.
So….thanks for your inspiration and for sharing your experience. You are making a difference in Columbia, Missouri!

Debbie, thank you for taking the time to tell us about what your church is doing. We’re confident that  your story will stir the Holy Spirit in someone’s heart to do something creative and new in their worship planning soon.

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