December 2008

The fruit of silence is prayer. (meditation)
The fruit of prayer is faith.
The fruit of faith is love.
The fruit of love is service.
The fruit of service is peace.

Mother Teresa, A Simple Path

I have recently been asked to evaluate several church websites.  My observations are not as a web design professional but as an end user.

  1. If you are not going to update on a regular basis make your information general and leave off specific dates
  2. Make sure that your address and phone number and access to a map on the opening page
  3. Make sure that email contact information is easily accessible for daily ministry activities
  4. The wrong colors make the web site difficult to read and the church appears to be non inviting
  5. Two maybe three menus are enough
  6. If you have music make sure you have the option to turn it off that is easy to locate

Here are a few websites that I like

New Hope

The United Methodist Church of the Resurrection

Fellowship Church

Community Christian Church

By Brian McLaren, re-posted from the Emergent/C email newsletter:

Dear Friends of Emergent Village,

It’s been an amazing year. For me, it was the 10th anniversary of my first book being published, and the 10th anniversary of my discovering the community and conversation now known as Emergent Village. It’s hard to believe how much has happened in just 10 years.

This is the year that Phyllis Tickle’s book The Great Emergence was released, and many of us feel that this book is helping us understand in a greater way what’s been happening in and among us over this decade, what we’re participating in, what’s trying to be born.

And this is the year that thousands of us participated in an online survey that gave us the chance to express what Emergent Village means to us, along with our hopes and concerns and needs.


Martin Luther King Jr.: … power without love is reckless and abusive and … love without power is sentimental and anemic. Power at its best is love implementing the demands of justice

 by Howard Thurman

Give me the courage to live!
Really live– not merely exist.
Live dangerously,
Scorniging risk!
Live honestly,
Daring the truth–
Particularly the truth of myself!
Live resiliently–
Ever changing, ever growing, ever adapting.
Enduring the pain of change
As though ’twere the travail of birth.
Give me the courage to live,
Give me the strength to be free
And endure the burden of freedom
And hte loneliness of those without chains;
Let me not be trapped by success,
Nor by failure, not pleasure, nor grief,
Nor malice, nor praise, nor remorse!

Give me the courage to go on!
Facing all that waits on the trail–
Going eagerly, joyously on,
And paying my way as I go,
Without anger or fear or regret
Taking what life gives,
Spending myself to the full,
Dead high, spirit winged, like a god–
On… on… till hte shadows draw close.
Ten even when darkness shuts down,
ANd I go out alone as I came,
Naked and blind as I camm–
Even then, gracous God, hear my prayer:
Give me the courage to live!

GREAT QUOTE from Tim Keller, pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in Manhattan… from his latest book, The Prodigal God:

“Jesus’s teaching consistently attracted the irreligious while offending the Bible-believing, religious people of his day. However, in the main, our churches today do not have this effect. The kind of outsiders Jesus attracted are not attracted to contemporary churches, even our most avant-garde ones. We tend to draw conservative, buttoned-down, moralistic people. The licentious and liberated or the broken and marginal avoid church. That can only mean one thing. If the preaching of our ministers and the practice of our parishioners do not have the same effect on people that Jesus had, then we must not be declaring the same message that Jesus did.”