Lyrics Projection Update

Oct. 3, 2012

So how have things been going?  Wonderfully.

The congregation thoroughly enjoys seeing things on the screen.   The Pastor now finds it hard to function without the display.  We are staying busy in the sound-booth.

Since the initial installation we have included all of the following:

Songs/Chorus, Scriptures, Videos, Pictures, Countdowns (some of which the Youth really enjoy), Announcements, Birthdays/Anniversaries, Custom slide displays and PowerPoint presentations from visiting speakers.

All of this is controlled by OpenLP.

How has OpenLP performed?  Superbly.  It took a little getting used to at first, but the software is extremely easy to use.  Our Pastor now gives us a sheet before service containing his message title and scriptures to be used.  It only takes a few minutes to look things up and “add them to the service”.  Often he wants an additional scripture displayed.  These can be looked up and displayed in seconds.

From the Bulletin we get Announcements and Birthdays/Anniversaries.  We use the Custom slide feature of OpenLP to display these.   Again, just a few minutes to edit and add to the service.  We use the “slide show” feature of OpenLP to display announcements before and after service.

One of the nicest features of OpenLP (for us), is the “search as you type” in the Song manager.

We are an Apostolic Pentecostal church, and as such (if you know us), never know what songs or choruses are going to be used during a service.  With this search feature, when the song leader starts singing, we (in the sound booth) start typing and usually can have the song displayed before the first line is complete.  Song searching is very fast.  We also jump between songs and it’s a very easy to add the current song to the service list so it can be redisplayed.

Songs can be added/modified quickly with the built-in editor or they can be imported from other source using the numerous included importers.  OpenLP does not display the total number of songs in the data base.

OpenLP does not have a built-in “countdown” feature, but I does a very good job of displaying videos.  OpenLP uses several methods to display videos, but the only one I can get to work on Windows 7 is  VLC  2.0 (another free open-source product).  I wish it had a feature to start playing the video at a specific time.

Bible verse look-up is very flexible and quick.  However, once a scripture is found, it cannot be edited.  (We don’t edit for content, but rather for emphasis. )

Custom slides are somewhat limited but they serve a good purpose.  We use the custom slide feature to display message titles, scripture titles, birthdays and announcements to name a few.  Rendering with a picture background is a bit slow and there is no way to export/import a custom slide from another machine.

Over all I am very pleased with OpenLP.  The program is rock-solid, well supported and is only getting better.  For a totally free program, it is awesome and is as feature rich as others costing 100′s of dollars.


The scheduled release of version 2.0 is the end of October, 2012.