what if church plants had pastors but used videos of other preachers because:
1. they decided the sermon is just one element of their time together and not the premier thing.
To be honest, I think this is the right reason and the wrong answer. That is, it's good for us to become less sermo-centric (critics: please don't read as less bibliocentric). I tend to think that Video Venues push us in exactly the opposite direction.
Now, I'm not saying that with using Video Venues, you couldn't allow everything in your gathering to preach, but you are by definition adding more focus to the sermon event monologue, not less.
I think the way to do what you are talking about, Dave, is not to watch the sermon on the screen, but rather to cease allowing it to be the climax of the morning. Cease the monological style of communication that doesn't make room for dialogue or hearing God's voice through other speakers or even follow up and clarification questions.
What we've tried to do (and we need to try harder...) is to diffuse the teaching and experiencing and hearing from God throughout the whole morning. You can read about Sunday mornings at evergreen here, but what we've done, in short, is try to do away with the "worship" time and the "sermon" time, diffusing the "point" of the morning rather than distilling it into three points delivered monologically.
Now, I could see the use of something like a Rob Bell Nooma video, where it's short, to the point, and allows plenty of room after for discussion by the people (in fact, I think we need to use one of those occasionally, now that I think about it). But when we are by definition locking our communities into passively watching a 30-40 monologue with someone they can never, ever speak back to...
I know that much of what is shown on Video Venues is top quality, very creative and inspiring preaching. It has to be! :) But if we want to make preaching not the "main point" of what we do, perhaps this is a step in the wrong direction.
But I may have a flawed understanding of this. My experience has been a Video Venue at North Coast and some stabs at it at the mega church I worked at for awhile. Tell me how they can be used, positively, to make preaching not the main event. And tell me if I'm making any sense here at all... been up since 3:30 again, dangit. :)