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Preaching by Faith and by Sight

How churches—and pastors—are adapting to the visual revolution.

This article is excerpted from the Building Church Leaders download Building Visual Media into Your Ministry.

We are entering the third age of communication, according to Andy Crouch, culture guru and director of Christianity Today International's Christian Vision Project. The first age was oral communication, when history and theology were captured in stories and shared around campfires and tables. The second age was written communication, when the stories were committed to papyrus and sheepskin and paper and finally mass-produced. Now comes the third age. "Just as the shift to writing required the skills we call literacy, so visual culture requires its own skills—for lack of a better word, visualcy," Crouch said.

A 2007 Leadership journal survey of preachers shows the visual revolution is well underway. Leadership surveyed 515 subscribers who, as lead pastors, preach regularly. Most have entered the visual fray—some signed on willingly, others feel conscripted—but almost ...

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