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Reviews of Congregational Web Sites

We are not an award granting site! You will not get a cute icon if your site is reviewed by us, but you might learn something to enhance your congregation's site.

After visiting thousands of web sites of religious communities, we determined to do our part to improve the overall quality and design of congregational sites.

We thought that reviews of excellent sites would help explain why we believe these sites are good, and perhaps how they could develop further.

Unlike the efforts of sites like websitesthatsuck.com, we hoped that a critical examination of quality sites would both educate and inspire those responsible for planning their congregation’s site.

Who are we to do this judging you ask? My assistant and I have spent far too many hours surfing for information on churches for our web site and in researching religious communities. Often we have been frustrated by poorly designed sites or dismayed by the lack of content on them. Plus we have read countless books, articles and web sites on web design. We also planned and maintained numerous sites including this one. And finally, we know what we like and what works…up

So these reviews are our reasoned opinions about the quality features of these congregational sites. Within the next few months we will present more of our views on church web design in the section on creating congregational web pages. Until then you can check out our list of criteria by which we judge these sites. Check out our Mosque website evaluation criteria list

We begin this review series with several sites of large congregations who, at least initially, hired or used professional web site designers who were often members of their congregations. Most of these sites are also listed in Churches dot Net Kingdom Best list of the top 5% church web pages. However, in the coming months we will examine the sites of smaller or less often reviewed congregations.

Finally, we mean no offense in these reviews. Rather we want folks to learn the components of a good congregational web site by looking critically at quality sites.

If you have comments or suggestions about our reviews please contact Scott or Samantha at feedback@hartsem.edu but please do not send us the names of sites to review.

*Please note, some churches have redesigned their sites since these reviews were written.  You may find some comments are no longer applicable under their new format.

List of reviews by date:

January 14, 2004 - Review of Church of Christ, Congregational
We're back with a review that focuses on the effort to start a web site and suggestions for this Connecticut church to enhance content.   (read more...)

January 27, 2003 - Review of Renton Assembly
Soft colors and a simple design highlight the web site for this Washington congregation.  (read more...) 

July 11, 2002 - Review of Emmanuel Church
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania is the proud home of a church with a wonderfully designed interactive site brimming with content and photos.  (read more...)

June 7, 2002 - Review of Zion Church
A clean design and simple approach makes this Lincoln, Nebraska church site an effective and impressive presence.  (read more...)

April 26, 2002 - Review of Calvary Lutheran Church
Visit a church that offers the basics of their church alongside spiritual artwork and writing. (read more...)

March 18, 2002 - Review of Hickory Grove Baptist Church 
This site offers dynamic images in an entertaining format which is sure to delight your eye.  (read more...)

December 12, 2001 - Review of Christ Church Alexandria
A beautifully historic church in Virginia whose site offers rich descriptions of ministries reflective of their culture and heritage which spans over two centuries.  (read more...) 

October 8, 2001 - Review of Crossroads Church
Descriptive ministry information, eye pleasing graphics, and interactive message boards are just a few of the features offered by this Corona, California church.  (read more...)

August 23, 2001 - Review of the Evangelical Free Church of Manassas
Targeted for new and regular web visitors, this Manassas, Virginia church provides great resources and the Pastor's answers to everyday questions.  (read more...)

June 4, 2001 - Review of The Congregational Church of West Medford
Warm and friendly, inviting and informative are just a few of the descriptors appropriate for The Congregational Church located in West Medford, Massachusetts.  (read more...)

April 18, 2001 - Review of First Assembly of God
A good use of interactive features and excellent descriptions of church ministries helps visitors get to know this Bakersfield, California congregation.  (read more...)

March 8, 2001 - Review of Church of the Resurrection
This down-to-earth site offers simple navigation and all the information one would seek to learn about this inviting West Chicago, Illinois congregation.  (read more...)

January 3, 2001 - Review of Central Presbyterian Church
Brimming with information, this site offers important details for potential new visitors and in-depth information for their members giving a warm family feel to this Baltimore, Maryland congregation. (read more...)

November 30, 2000 - Review of Colonial Baptist Church
Located in Cary, North Carolina, Colonial boasts a clean and inviting design with an abundance of information about themselves and other useful resources.  (read more...) 

October 10, 2000 - Review of West Acres Baptist Church
Based in Evans, Georgia, West Acres offers a multitude of resources and a wealth of information including an audio posting of the most recent Sunday sermons. (read more...)

August 28, 2000 - Review of Overland Park Church of Christ
A large church based in Overland Park, Kansas, this site contains easy navigation and clear information while displaying a simple yet elegant design.  (read more...)





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