LONGWOOD, Fla., Oct. 11 /PRNewswire/ -- A pioneering church that has brought live worship to mobile devices including the iPhone and to Facebook's 500 million users is thinking outside the box once again with the first-ever live church channel on the Roku set-top device.
Now accessible in Roku's channel store, the free channel from Northland, A Church Distributed (http://www.northlandchurch.net) offers easy access to live worship services, along with past sermons, music and classes.
More than 4,000 people now worship each week with Northland online. Making services available on Roku provides a way for individuals to gather together for worship that doesn't require huddling around a computer screen or complicated PC-to-TV hookups. Starting at $59, and about the size of a paperback novel, it's also one of the most compact and least expensive ways to bring the church into just about any room.
"Roku has big potential as a community builder and makes it easier to gather people together for worship as the Bible challenges us to do in Hebrews 10:25," explains Marty Taylor, Northland's executive director of media design and technology.
Word is spreading quickly about the new Roku channel, and Northland is now helping other churches who want to use the technology. Taylor says that Roku is ideally suited for planting house churches "because it removes the need for a computer, and it is so easy to use and setup."
He recently delivered set-top boxes to some of Northland's house churches. The reaction?
Ron and Marcy Burth started a house church this summer at their home in Venice, Fla., which is now attended by 20 people. Marcy raves, "The Roku box is fantastic. It has really simplified our connection to Northland."
Jeremy Langston is an online congregant from Benton, La., who has worshiped with Northland along with his wife and five children for about a year now. When he's not traveling for his job, he uses his Roku to connect to Northland's live worship. When he's on the road, he worships via Northland's Facebook app ... well, he's not technically "on the road," he's a paramedic on an offshore oil platform in the Gulf.
"The bandwidth is just enough for the Facebook app to stream," he explains. "When I am home, I enjoy the Roku's large, high-quality picture instead of a tiny computer screen, and the sound is much better."
So far, more than 2,100 people have already installed Northland's Roku channel. Roku recently struck a deal with Hulu, the popular online service that offers streaming of TV shows and movies. Channel additions such as this will almost certainly have more people buying the device, which means more people potentially finding Northland's channel.
Langston concludes, "I believe the Northland channel will get so much exposure that it may just win many people to Christ who were not looking for Him."
Robert Andrescik, Director of Public Relations
SOURCE Northland, A Church Distributed