Pro Audio Speaker Wire Fail - Story/Question

I have been the leader of the audio visual team at my church for the past several years. The team consists almost entirely of engineers (the one exception is a computer nerd); however, none of us have any prior pro audio experience and all of the equipment, setup, and connections predated all of us. The equipment was all be pieced together over time by well-meaning yet mostly uninformed people. I have slowly been working my way through the system as I learn more and more. A few years ago we cleaned up the existing cables and removed piles of cables that were only connected on one end or in some cases not at all. Other cables were super long so we visually cleaned things up significantly by spending a few hours coiling up cables. I've finally just about replaced all of the old cables with new stuff from monoprice and we also removed piles of equipment (mostly sources) that would never be used again. The unused equipment and cables were a literal pile that one of the members hauled away in several lawn tractor trailor loads.

I have been very unhappy with the systems performance and sound and last week discovered that something wasn't right with the main speaker wiring. Yesterday, we dug into the setup and rewired the two main speakers to be in stereo with connections to seperate amplifiers that are in bridged mode. We also went through the entire system to correct the gain structure (it was pretty much the opposite of what it should have been). Now we have a great sounding system and we actually have signal levels registering on the board and processor. Previously, we had to have the amplifiers turned all the way up and know they are running around 1/4.

What propted us to get things corrected was finding out that the two main speakers were wired to the amplifier using a single 14 awg wire even though there were two running from the amplifier to the speakers. Now we have two stereo connections even though they share the same mono output from the board. Even after removing the spider web of connection at the speakers we have no idea how the speakers were intended to be connected previously. Each speaker is setup for single or bi-amping so there are four terminals on each. Somehow they managed to have a connection to every terminal yet it all tied into one run of cable going to the amplifier. It appeared that both of the stereo wires were connected, but seemingly did nothing and the other would power both speakers. I have the nest of wires in my truck and I plan to see if I can reverse engineer the mess. Based on how much we were struggling with the overall volume (given the nominal 8 ohm speakers) and the horrible sound, I am guessing that they managed to wire them such that they had a 16 ohm plus load while being out of phase. To make things worse they had both wires in parallel at the amplifier on one of the two stereo channels. Part of what helped us identify the issue was trying to go to bridged mode and having the amplifier shut down clipping. It's a wonder that nothing was damaged since they have been hooked up this way for at least 10 years.

When we left, the overall sound had improved to the point that I was actually enjoying the music we were playing while adjusting the system. I even joked about Imax being installed.

It's genuinely pathetic how poorly the system was setup and that it took me/us this long to figure it out.

Does anybody have any idea what they wiring goal for the speakers may have been? I'm thinking they have have been trying to wire the highs together in series, the lows together in series and then the two in parallel, but I have no idea...

Have any of you ever had to clean up after a mess like this?
It looks like the goal was biamping with the two speakers in parallel, it is obvious that the jumpers were never changed internally to support biamping. What a mess...
So who are the engineers if any?
It looks like it was a bunch of wild guesses action and not knowledge based.
Oh this way sounds, but how sounds who cares...
Why don't you just hire a local A/V company for a day to figure it out and be done with it. It couldn't cost that much, and you will save a lot of aggravation.
I should take part of the blame for not digging into it several years ago, but but my wife's brother recently moved to town and has a lot of pro audio experience which is a big part of what prompted me to finally get it all figured out. I think we are setup fairly well at this point and have pretty much been through everything in the system now which should minimize future surprises. I am looking forward to hearing the system in the coming weeks to see how much better it really sounds.
Well then, what was your question?
"Have any of you ever had to clean up after a mess like this?"

I thought some might be entertained by or could relate to my experience.
OK, now I understand. Thanks.
I think the success of the recent changes became obvious today. Special music was a duet with a singer and acoustic guitar. Had I been running the board I would have brought the volume on the guitar up a bit, but it sounded so clean I didn't think the microphone was on at first. It became more obvious that it was, but what a difference. Also, the noise floor in the sanctuary is dramatically lower to the point that I distinctly notice how quiet it is now. Still a little feedback to track down, but we are much improved and really close to having something great!