In statistics, an outlier is an observation that is significantly different from the others within a sample.
As thousands gather for services at Southeast Christian Church’s campuses each weekend, thousands of others are watching streaming services locally and globally each Sunday.
Some viewers may seem like outliers on the world map: Canada, South Africa, Hawaii, Indonesia, Scotland, Germany, The Bahamas, Greece, Australia, Iceland, Guatemala and Nairobi. Live streaming services decrease the distance between those points on a map.
In the final message of the “Redeem the Screen” series, Senior Pastor Kyle Idleman showed a world map with green dots on it representing where people viewed a Southeast service.
“It’s just an incredible time that we have to be alive and as a church we have a lot of opportunities,” Idleman said. “We want to leverage all of them because we want to reach one dot at a time. One person at a time. There will be a day where one of these dots has a name … that you’re connected to.”
Southeast began streaming services in June with the hope to meet people wherever they are. Here are a few stories:
uAmy has cancer, and it was hard for her to volunteer in many areas of the church. Some weeks she comes to services wearing a germ mask. When streaming started, Amy began serving as a chat host and has had the opportunity to minister to others through her illness.
uBethwel viewed a Southeast service in Kenya, where she lives in poverty. She wanted to get connected to a church, and Southeast’s live-streaming staff were able to put her in touch with Life In Abundance, one of Southeast’s mission partners in Nairobi.
uMarilyn is a former Southeast member who now lives in Arizona. She lives in a senior living home and misses her church family, so she logs onto Facebook each Sunday to watch the service and feel connected.
uA man from Australia dialed Southeast’s minister on call phone one Friday night asking for help. They asked why he was calling from Australia, and he said he attends Southeast online.
Southeast services have been viewed in Boston, Massachusetts; Albany, New York; Corpus Christi, Texas; Jacksonville, Florida; Rapid City, South Dakota; Boulder, Colorado and Anchorage, Alaska.
SE Online isn’t just for those who can’t attend a weekend service. It’s also an outreach tool for the unchurched, for the curious, for neighbors and for those isolated from a local church for various reasons.
The “live experience” is broadcast each Sunday at 11:30 a.m., 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. During the three live experience times, Southeast has chat hosts and online pastors available to talk and pray with viewers in real time.
The 11:30 a.m. streaming service is broadcast from the Blankenbaker Campus with a brief technological buffer for programming reasons. The 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. live experiences are replays from the morning service, but still offer chat hosts and online pastors.
As an added component of the live experience, the Midweek Meet-Up is offered about one Wednesday per month. The half-hour talk goes deeper into the current sermon series and responds to specific questions. Three hosts respond in real time to comments from viewers.
Viewers also may watch a replay of the service anytime on Southeast’s Facebook or YouTube pages.