The focus of a worship presentation is the message being conveyed to the congregation by the worship leader. There a basically two different manners in which the message is delivered; a typical presentation at a podium, or a “roaming” more interactive, animated delivery. In theory, either of these delivery methods can be combined with the systems we’ve presented, however it would be very uncommon to see a podium used with a self-contained portable sound system.


A worship presentation from a podium can utilize a wide variety of microphones including boundary microphones, gooseneck microphones, handheld microphones, and even wireless, but the most commonly used microphones in houses of worship are known as lectern or podium mics. These microphones are typically Gooseneck or Boundary in style. Goosenecks are recommended for the lectern or podium since they can be positioned up high, closer to the speaker’s mouth, while the low-profile, surface-mounted Boundary mics are more often found on altars where aesthetics play a bigger role.

Proper lectern microphone usage

  • Adjust your microphone for correct placement
  • Try to keep a distance of 8 to 16 inches
  • Don’t blow or touch the mic or mount while in use
  • Minimize noise from materials on the lectern
  • Speak articulately with adequate vocal inflection

Proper altar microphone usage

  • Speak within the microphone coverage area
  • Pay attention to proper microphone placement
  • Minimize noise from materials on the altar
  • Project your voice, due to increased distance from the microphone

Some of the most common microphones that you’ll find include the popular Shure CVG12 Gooseneck, Shure Centraverse Boundary mic, Shure SM58 Handheld, and the Samson Concert 88 wireless lavalier system.


Wireless systems provide additional advantages to consider such as hands-free operation, mobility and improved aesthetics. They are comprised of two main components, transmitters and receivers. Transmitters are most commonly found in the form of handheld mics or body packs. The body pack in turn connects to your lavalier, headset mic or musical instrument and transmits the signal wirelessly to the receiver. A worship leader that wants to be more mobile is likely to choose between Wireless Handheld, Wireless Lavalier, and Wireless Headset systems. There are even Combo Wireless Systems that offer additional flexibility allowing you to choose between handheld or lavalier microphones from the same system.

Once you’ve prepared your room for proper miking of the alter and lectern, you may want to consider miking a choir, which you can learn about in our next section.

Next: Miking the Choir