I’ve been working on our church website since 2008 when I first started getting deeper into web development and graphic design. So, the site has gone through a number of different renditions over the years including:
- WordPress (2011~present)
- Joomla! (2009-2011)
- Static HTML (2008-2009)
- Google Sites (2006-2008)
- Theme: Fizz Theme
- Emphasis: Sermon Series + podcast
The following features were added in 2013 in order to meet the church’s goals for the site:
- A “Portfolio” of sermons (built into the Fizz theme) to house sermon archives
- Justin Tadlock’s Series plugin to keep track of the sermons and display them in the sidebar in the appropriate categories
- An iTunes podcast of the sermons
- An embedded audio player, weekly bulletin, & sermon notes for each sermon
- A profile plugin to display specialized individual author info on their posts
- Theme: Calenotis Magazine Theme
- Emphasis: Bible reading + Christian/World news
From 2011-2012, in order to meet the desired outcomes for the website, I added the following components:
- A Twitter Feed gathered from various churches and ministries to share Christian/World news
- A regular blog through the Bible beginning with Genesis and covering three chapters at a time to encourage Bible reading
- Theme: Hand coded Joomla! template
- Emphasis: Community Involvement
This was an idea that was actually well ahead of its time. I spent over 6 months actively developing this site in Joomla! with various plugins that added (a lot of) extra Community functionality including:
- Twitter widgets to update Christian and world news
- A fully customizable Bible reading plan
- A chat box
- Prayer Center (to log in and leave prayer requests)
- Google Calendar events
- User profiles
- Social Networking capabilities (like a simplified Facebook)
- A discussion forum
Ultimately, the church never really had enough members to sustain these kinds of features, so with the upgrade to WordPress in 2011, I let them all die.
Besides, WordPress honestly has much better plugins to deal with the same kind of functionality, so if the church ever wants to implement them again, it’ll be simple.
Static HTML (2008-2009)
- Theme: Multi-Flex 2
- Emphasis: Provide church information
This was the first time I took over coding the church website. The pastor had previously built the site in Google Sites but I felt that it had too many different page designs (each page used a different style). So, I offered to unify the design with the same template across all pages and transfer the previous site over.
This was also the first time I tried doing a sermon podcast, but EVERYTHING was done by hand in Static HTML so it started eating up a significant portion of my time.
Eventually, prompted by the redesign of another site (TheJeonjuHub.com) into Joomla, I decided to work this site up in Joomla as well.
You may have also noticed that each version of the websites above, I gradually modified the AICF logo.