Engage Parishioners with Digital Displays

The Cathedral of Our Lady of the Rosary uses electronic displays to engage parishioners at the church’s two major entryways. These displays are free standing kiosks that hold LED monitors.

“People really like the quality of images and they notice the messages because the images change”, said Fr. Peter Muhich, Rector of the Cathedral. “I really like that they don’t clutter the entrances.”

What equipment are you using?

  • The Cathedral uses clean and elegant kiosks from Peerless-AV to complement the bright 42-inch, portrait-mounted, LED monitor displays. Peerless-AV offers several different kinds of mountings, from free standing to wall-mounted kiosks. More traditional wall or ceiling mounting hardware is also available.
  • The presentations on the displays are provided through Rise Vision digital signage content management system. The Rise Vision CMS utilizes the Google Cloud Platform and is free! The Cathedral does use Rise Vision’s media storage ($10 per month) in addition to the free CMS.
  • Content is sent to the monitors via the Cathedral’s Wi-Fi network using Asus Chromeboxes installed in the kiosks.

The Rise Vision player software and the Chromeboxes provide a fairly simple and straight forward system that is stable and provides an easy way to integrate rich content from Rise Vision or other websites to the displays.

How does this all work together?

The Cathedral uses a template that shows images of the Cathedral itself, the parish’s Holy Rosary School, and an image slideshow using images created by the parish’s bulletin editor.  The Rise Vision CMS is extremely intuitive.

  • Users “drag and drop” content from their desktop to the Rise Vision site which sends that content to the displays.Content for the displays can be text, presentations, images, video, or even full websites.
  • When changes are made to presentations, a simple press of a button pushes the new content or message to both displays automatically.
  • Runtime can be adjusted for each slide depending on the complexity of the content.

The Cathedral kiosks are set up in portrait mode, the same as smartphone screens. This ensures that materials and images produced for the kiosks can be easily viewed on mobile devices.

Images are also repurposed for traditional poster designs and church bulletin art. Sharing the portrait format across several applications makes it easier to produce media and art that have a unified look and message.

For example, parishioners can view Holy Day Mass times in the bulletin, on the electronic displays when they enter and leave church, and on their smartphones if they visit the parish’s website.

How much does this all cost?

The cost of the kiosk displays for the Cathedral was about $2,500 each for hardware and an additional $250 per unit for labor on installation.

  • The Peerless kiosks were the most expensive part of the display ($1,275 each) and lower cost alternatives are available depending on needs (wall/ceiling mounting hardware is available for several hundred dollars less).
  • The 42“ LED displays from NEC were $885 each and an extended three year warranty ($110) was purchase for each unit .
  • The Asus Chromeboxes cost $175 each.
  • An additional $50 per display was spent for miscellaneous cabling, anchors and power strips.

Jack Worachek is the Communications Director and Parish Secretary for the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Rosary as well as the Technology Coordinator for the Diocese of Duluth.

 

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