How to Calculate Proper Lighting for a Church

How to Calculate Proper Lighting for a Church example imageHow Do You Go About Calculating The Proper Lighting For Your Church?

The answer can really depend on several factors. You need to think about the way your church is set up and also about what you are trying to accomplish. Certain situations will call for different lighting techniques, and you want your lighting setup to be as versatile as it can possibly be. When you have a lighting setup that will work for several purposes, it will give you more options to make things as pleasing as possible.

Choosing the Right Lighting System

Of course, there are many different lighting systems that you can make use of. Church light is very important, and you need to have a lighting system that will work for your building. There are many ways that you can go about doing this. You can choose to buy an entire lighting system from a company that specializes in providing church lighting or you can choose to piece together your own system. Whatever it is that you choose to do, you need to be sure that you have the right lighting for your church size.

The majority of all churches in America have under one-hundred members in their congregation. This means that most churches are modestly-sized and do not have buildings that are too big. Many churches can use lighting setups that will be easy to implement. Larger churches with very big congregations may want to take the time to get bigger lighting setups.

You have to calculate things based on the size of your building. You need to have the right lighting that suits the size of the building and the size of your stage for your stage lights. There are many factors that go into making these choices. Some churches won’t have high enough ceilings to make hanging lights practical. There are buildings that are longer than they are wide, too, so you need to calculate the appropriate lighting power and type to use for your situation.

Choosing the Right Types of Light

You want to be able to choose the right types of light for your church service. Having access to different types of light will be a good idea. For example, you may want to have some nice warm lights for certain parts of the service. Warm lights have a calming effect and seem to be able to help people relax. Bright lights will be appropriate for certain parts of a service, and softer lighting will work better for other sections.

Aside from thinking about the type of lights in that way, you also need to think about both direct and indirect lighting options. When you make use of direct lighting in a church setting, it is usually placed above the stage and is pointing directly at what is being highlighted. Indirect lighting works differently, as it will be lighting a wider area and is not highlighting one specific spot. Depending on what sort of lighting you are going for, you may want to use one or the other.

Many churches use a combination of these two types of lighting. Indirect lighting will be used during most of the service, and then direct lighting is used during the sermon or perhaps when the choir is performing. There are different ways that you can decide to go about setting up your lights. It is just important to consider the type of lighting that you are using and what you want to accomplish with the lighting.

Calculating the Optimal Positions for the Lights

Taking the time to properly calculate the optimal positions for the lights will be in your best interests. If you want your lighting to come across in the best possible way, then you need to position things just so. Lighting in the right spots will allow you to get the best results. This is common sense, but it is something that you need to put some thought into ahead of time.

For example, you may wish to have lights in the back of the church that point towards the stage. Having some softer warm lights above the pulpit may also be appropriate. You may want to have lights positioned in such a way that they can face the altar. Whatever your needs are, you want to make sure that your lights are set up in the right position to make things happen.

During different parts of a church service, you will be able to switch your lighting up. You may want a more active and fun lighting experience during the praise and worship section. During the sermon, having a soft light highlight the pastor is likely going to be the most appropriate option. If your church has an altar call at the end of the service, then lighting highlighting the altar towards the end will be just right. Calculating things properly will allow you to get the best results throughout the entire service.

Sometimes you will need to try things out to see just how much light you will need. When you are installing a new lighting system, it can be appropriate to do a dry run and see how everything looks. You should be able to get everything set up right and will be able to control it all easily from a board that is located somewhere in the sanctuary. This will allow you to operate the lights and switch things up whenever it is called for during the service.

Conclusion

Calculating the lighting in your church does not have to be quite as difficult as it sounds. If you take the time to get things right, then the results are going to be superb. Everyone in your congregation is going to really enjoy the light show that you will be using. It can be a fun experience for everyone to have interesting lighting during appropriate times of the worship songs. Having more subdued lighting to help people focus on the message of the sermon will work nicely, too.

Whatever your needs are, you’ll be able to find the right lighting setup for your church. Churches that are big will have different needs from ones that operate in smaller buildings. All churches deserve to have excellent lighting, though. This can be accomplished so long as you take the time to calculate things properly.

Sources:

Majority of American Churches Fall Below 100 in Worship Attendance. Retrieved on 1/25/19 from: https://factsandtrends.net/2016/02/24/majority-of-american-churches-fall-below-100-in-worship-attendance/

When is Warm Lighting Appropriate? Retrieved on 1/25/19 from: https://www.thespruce.com/warm-lighting-2175144

Duke Taber

Duke Taber has been a Senior Pastor of various churches since 1988. Prior to that, he was involved in the Christian rock scene opening for such notables as Larry Norman, Randy Stonehill, Rez Band, and once played briefly with Darrel Mansfield. Today he is the owner and managing editor of 3 successful Christian websites that support missionaries around the world.He is currently starting a brand new church in Mesquite NV called Mesquite Worship Center.