"Our church has recently added a video screen to our sanctuary. We are in the beginning stages on learning how to use it for announcements and other parts of our church service. We have found some resources for slide backgrounds, videos and countdowns. Most of the video and countdown sites have a fee to use these. We are a small church and just wondering where the best sites are for these things, and possibly free usage sites also. Any suggestions?"
Though there are many excellent companies that create PowerPoint presentations for churches, many do charge a hefty fee for their materials. As someone who creates resources for churches, I know everyone needs to make a living, but at the same time, I as someone who is married to a bi-vocational pastor and whose work at the church is done for no compensation, I do know that church resources can be very tight, while ministry demands can be challenging.
I did a good bit of research on this and found the following websites have some excellent FREE resources! Rather than simply telling you about them, I did 3 video reviews, so you can actually see the sites. Following are video reviews of the sites I found most useful with preliminary comments and direct links to them.
PLEASE respond in the comments section if you have other sites that you use either free or paid for. Any extra comments would be very helpful. Thanks so much!
Free PowerPoint Templates from Christian sources
This site is just WONDERFUL! Lots of free materials, really good quality, and I found the overall attitude of the site encouraging and uplifting. Not only PowerPoint, but lots of other materials you'll find very useful for church communications.
I didn't find this as useful for worship-type PowerPoint as some, but I really like their teaching materials. Good graphics and maps section and OK background images. I use a lot of maps and historical images in my Bible teaching to remind people that the Christian faith is rooted in real history that took place in real places.
I really liked the materials here. This site has mostly materials that cost, but they also have some free materials, that change and that are wonderful. Their quality is excellent and their prices are very reasonable. This does cost, but their video: A Man's Thesaurus had me laughing out-loud. Check it out when you need a bit of humor.
Free PowerPoint Templates for Churches Video Review
Free PowerPoint templates from Secular Sources
This is a weird site—but useful weird. Be sure to look at the video before you go to it. It has some GREAT material and it's all FREE, but what is weird about it is all the junk ads, software download boxes and other stuff that clutter up the site. But if you take a few minutes with it, you'll be rewarded with some really great PowerPoint Templates.
The link above goes directly to the free PowerPoint templates from Microsoft. As you'll see the best ones they offer don't come from Microsoft themselves, but from companies that give free resources to them. It is a little tricky to find and access these resources, but the video that follows shows you how.
Free Templates and Clipart for Churches from Secular Sources
Free Power Point Training Resource
This is a very interesting site—it does have lots of free templates for PowerPoint and the video below shows you how to access them, but it also has lots of educational information on all sorts of topics related to PowerPoint, such as an extensive tutorial about presenting on the iPad. There are lots of links to books and other resources related to PowerPoint and links to downloads of software trials. Their religious templates feature ones for non-Christian religions, which could be very useful for world religion classes. Bookmark this site as the offering and education materials change often.