With 10,000 college students attending Breakaway Ministries on any given Tuesday night, it’s a no brainer that God is doing great things on the campus of Texas A&M. Led by Ben Stuart and his team, Breakaway is a weekly college ministry that gathers students together, shares the good news of Jesus, and helps connect them with the local church. Being a long-time fan of Breakaway and having been blessed by their podcast during my college years, I was incredibly excited to speak with them about their ministry, and how they’re using their app to spread the Gospel.
In today’s world, mobile and tablet use is rapidly growing and becoming more integrated into our everyday lives. With over 6 billion mobile phones worldwide, 195 million tablets sold in 2013, and “nomophobia”- the fear of being without a mobile device- being a common occurrence in today’s culture, this growth is no surprise.
So what does this mean for today’s schools and educational communities?
Here at Subsplash, our heart is to share the Gospel to the ends of the earth. We do this through providing high-quality, customizable mobile apps for churches and ministries. It is through these partnerships with Jesus-loving churches that we see the real fruits of our labor. The Lord has been so faithful in guiding our business. Sometimes it’s easy for us to keep our heads down, working on the next feature or iteration, only to be brought to our knees by a story that can only be explained by the Glory of God. It was through a conversation with a small church in Louisiana that we found such a story.Metro Life Church in Lafayette, Louisiana, is a church plant that has been around for 5 short years.
We love working with churches and ministries of all sizes to help share the Gospel here at Subsplash. That being said, younger churches and church-plants hold a special place in our hearts. We wanted to take some time to share how one young and growing church has been utilizing The Church App. I had the opportunity to chat with Sean from Remnant Church about the impact his church has seen since adding a mobile app with The Church App.
Remnant Church is located in Richmond, Virginia, and has a congregation of 300-350 members. They have had some incredible growth in the last few years for being a relatively young church, and are about to hit their 4 year mark in November. When they signed up with The Church App two years ago, their congregation was at about 150. Not only have they doubled in size, but they've seen 1,400 downloads of their app!
Q:What was the purpose or focus of creating the app?
A: "For us, creating the app was really a tool to help people get connected with the church. The app was a great way to reach the digital age, because a lot of our efforts utilize technology."
Q: What has been the greatest use of the app?
A: "Sermons in the app. Streaming through the app has been a lot better for our people. Apps are more user friendly and direct than podcasts. A lot of people use the app and the reach is beyond our church. We've seen a lot of people that come in from other churches and visit through the app. It has really helped us extend our reach. "
Q:Have there been any extra benefits?
A: "We have really been utilizing online forms in the app. Along with several other features (Maps, Blogs, Sermons) we have seen a lot of interaction. Since we enabled giving through our app (6 months ago) we have also seen a significant increase."
Q:What has been the commitment for maintaining the app?
A: "I am not a tech savvy guy, and it has been really easy for me to keep the app up to date, which says a lot. Response time with your support team has always been great and hassle-free."
Q: Any closing remarks?
A: "Working with you has been great. You are very personable, and it's evident that you're real people. I really love the layout of the app, I even prefer it to the website!"
Download the Remnant Church app here.
"Gotta love technology that serves larger purposes. Thanks for a job well done. Great success. 600 downloads in first week and the first week of giving was 3 times the monthly expense. I will tell the world"
-Bob Seymore, One Life Church
One Life Church in Henderson, Kentucky, was started in late 2010 after months of prayer and preparation. In just 3 short years they have grown to 2,000 in attendance most Sundays. Not only that, but they are currently establishing their third campus and don't have any plans of slowing down!
When we began working with One Life Church in 2011 they were still a relatively new church with 1000 members. The One Life Church App launched right before Christmas in 2011, and the results were incredible. At the time of their launch, Bob Seymore, CFO at One Life Church, had this to say; "Just a quick report of our Subsplash App. We launched on 12/23/11 (2 days before Christmas) and even with the holidays we have seen 1008 downloads in the first month with almost $2000 in giving through the app."
We decided to do a follow up with Bob to see how they'd been able to maximize their app over the past 18 months.
Q: What was the purpose or focus of creating the app?
A: "I was searching for a year for an app that integrated with our current systems - that was the selling point for me. There is a very young demographic at our church and mobile is huge, so we wanted to be able to reach them. Our big objective was that we wanted to be sure that our app was not just a go to once situation but that is was part of the life of our church."
Q: What has been the greatest use of the app?
A: "The interaction with community with the daily bible reading has been really important to us. Also, giving has been crazy. We've seen over $100,000 given through the app alone in the last 18 months. The costs are absolutely worth it. For us, the bottom line (from a giving standpoint) is the young market doesn’t carry cash. Being able to connect with them through the app has been really valuable."
Q: Have there been any extra benefits?
A: "I don’t understand why churches wouldn't (get an app). It’s been a great integration of our resources. We've gone down to one page, once a month for our bulletin and seen a lot of savings through that."
Q: How many downloads?
A: Almost 6,500 downloads in less than two years. The response has been crazy."
Q: Have you heard of any stories through the app?
A: "The coolest stories are like the one where I caught a pastor in our office after he had helped a brand new believer come to Christ and he immediately asked her to get her phone out, download the app and showed her how to read our explorers resources and daily Bible readings to help her start her journey. Gotta love technology that serves larger purposes."
Q: What has been the commitment for maintaining the app?
A: "I love that we don’t need developers in house to maintain the app. If your receptionist can answer the phone, they can update the app."
Q: Any closing remarks?
A: “I think the interesting piece is that Subsplash has an infrastructure that facilitates some of the best and brightest in the country. You work with the best minds and top 10 churches in the country. With the framework we can plug and play and customize to make it ‘us’. You guys are pretty seamless in it all. It's awesome that we can customize what Saddleback does and make it One Life."
Download the One Life Church App here.