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December 2011 Pulpit and Podium Considerations

Item #1
Consider first whether your house of worship requires a church pulpit that has a PA system built into it. If your church is already fitted with a sound system that works together with the microphones already present, then you may want to consider saving on your church podium by ordering one without a PA system.

On the other hand, if your church is in need of both voice amplification and a pulpit, consider ordering a church lectern with a built-in PA system as a cost-saving alternative to buying the sound system separately. Many of the church pulpits come with built-in PA systems that run on an amp with multimedia capabilities and include cost-effective accessories such as built-in speakers and microphones.

If your church pulpit is to be used often by many speakers of different heights, consider ordering a height-adjustable church lectern. If you anticipate needing to relocate your church podium often, consider a mobile podium with casters. Other church pulpit options offered include church lecterns with reading lamps, optional extension speakers, and optional lantern-style batteries. There are even church podiums with optional imagery on them.
--Ergo in Demand

Item #2
Church furniture and the term inexpensive aren't always two words that go together well. When it comes to church furniture, you will probably sacrifice a lot on quality if the price is "too good." There are, however, ways to still get affordable quality church furniture at a reasonable price.

You can save a little extra money by purchasing a factory second or overstock furniture.

Factory seconds are furniture that has a small blemish, during the manufacturing process that is insignificant to the naked eye, but significant enough that it can't be passed off as flawless. Factory seconds look great and are an affordable way to purchase a lectern.

Overstock is furniture that was made for another customer, but the order was never completed.
--Heavenly Wood

Item #3
When most people think of church pulpits, they imagine the typical acrylic pulpits that their local church owns. While these pulpits are very popular, they aren't the only choice. These days, there are literally hundreds of different pulpit selections for every church budget. A new series of affordable plexiglass pulpits are now on the market and they offer the ultimate in flexibility.

Both acrylic and plexiglass pulpits can add that special something to any space and it gives the speaker a place to rest his or her hands while speaking, as well as providing a place to put that week's sermon.
--MC Design

Item #4
There's a certain weight to church furniture, both spiritually and quite literally.  Through history the pastor alone led worship and the church furniture remained stationary, front and center.

Now, with a great variety in worship styles, there may me a team of singers and readers, maybe a rock band with a full drum kit, or of course there still could just be the pastor.  Traditionally the Baptismal Fonts, Communion Tables, Flower Stands, and the all important Pulpit have long resided permanently in front of the congregation. Equally keeping in tradition, these church furniture chancel sets are substantial in size and cannot just be swept into a closet when the band begins to a drum solo in praise of Him.

Are casters the answer?  When you make the church furniture mobile, it can move to the left or right and make room for special church presentations. But, does that lessen the visual solidity that is sought in church furnishings?

The concept of the "Centrality of the Word" is of great importance in Christianity and implies that the reading and preaching of the Bible is the centerpiece of a service of worship, and thus takes priority over the sacraments. The Central Pulpit is intended to give visual representation of this idea.

In many Protestant churches, the pulpit is placed in the center of the platform, and is generally the largest piece of church furniture. This is to symbolize the proclamation of the Word of God as the central focus of the weekly service of worship. The pulpit may be smaller in more contemporary evangelical churches, and is generally carried out after the end of the song service. The term "From the pulpit" is often used metaphorically for something said with official church authority.

In churches where there is only one speaker's stand in the center front of the church, it serves the functions of both lectern and pulpit and is properly called the ambo. The word ambo comes from a Greek word meaning an elevation.

In the 18th century, tiered pulpits were introduced in English speaking countries. The levels of these religious lecterns were intended to show the relative importance of the readings delivered to the church members. The bottom tier was for community announcements, the middle for the gospel, and the top tier was reserved for the delivery of the sermon.

While church furniture and the placement of the pulpit are certainly not the strongest ties that bond people to their spirituality, it does matter. Church furniture and furnishings can influence your mood and have a visual significance on the expression of congregational worship. You wouldn't want your church service to be shabby, out of date, and un-representational of your religious focus.  What does your church's pulpit say to you?
--Worthington Direct

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