by Robert Witty
The reason growing churches build Web sites is the same reason that these churches use postal service, printing equipment, amplifiers, copiers, telephones, and computers. Churches that grow are churches that know how to communicate with people-and do so.
Now that millions of homes visit the Internet, the aggressive church leader seizes this channel to reach as many people as possible. Think of a Web site as an "open door."
Before the church builds a Web site, however, leadership must decide on the purpose. You should decide how God wants you to utilize this resource and let that purpose determine its content. Consider these possibilities:
To some churches a Web site is a billboard. This kind of site contains the church's name, address, hours of service, and leadership. The mission of the church and the contribution that its services can make to its people are pertinent. Pictures of the buildings, the minister, and the staff, with a brief message from each, is helpful and friendly, And, of course, there is a "You'all Come."
To other churches a Web site is a school. This type seeks to provide some special kind of Christian knowledge. For example, my Web site makes available Bible studies, sermon outlines, original songs and poems, insights, and spiritual helps that I have gained through a long ministry. In like manner, some church Web sites provide sermons, doctrinal positions, and teachings to instruct the visitor.
As you can see, a Web site has much potential in today's world.