Standing Behind the Web Ministry
Written By: Timothy Fish Published: 11/18/2007
I got called into our senior pastorís office. No it wasnít because he caught me swinging on the church sign or washing my dog in the baptistery. He had seen an article E-Curb Appeal: People will visit your website before they visit your churchóif they make it that far. by Thomas G. Dolan that had been published in the Nov/Dec 2007 edition of Your Church. He wanted me to read it. He told me that I might agree or disagree with some of it. He was right. I agreed with part of it and I disagreed with part of it, but that isnít what was important about the two minute meeting that we had. I have written about the topics covered in the article on numerous occasions on the Internet and in my book. I do not believe there is reason to belabor the points I have already made.
There was something else that came out of that short meeting. Our senior pastor does not use a computer. When he needs information from the Internet, he may ask on of the other staff members. I am forwarding his e-mail to his secretary. Because he has chosen to remain computer illiterate, I do not expect him to take a big interest in our church website, but just by making the effort to show me the article that he saw, he made it clear to me that he is standing behind our web ministry. He may not understand it. He may not see much of it. He may not know how much work is involved, but he sees it as an important ministry.
It is not the pastorís job to maintain the church website. A pastor may take part in that and provide content for the site, but he has other responsibilities. It is perfectly fine for a pastor to let those involved with the web ministry do what they do without his direct involvement, but a pastor needs to be supportive of the web ministry. He needs to tell those involved with the ministry about people who visit the church after finding it on the web. He needs to occasionally mention the church website from the pulpit. He needs to encourage those involved with the web ministry to keep doing good work. That is what my pastor did by mentioning an article he had read. It doesnít take very long to encourage people. A few seconds may be all that is needed.
When a church website is not supported by the church leadership it will soon fall apart. No one wants to work on a website that no one wants. On the other hand, encouragement from the leadership is not all that is required to have a good website, but it certainly helps. It is more than just the encouragement that a ministry worker feels, but a pastor who is standing behind the church website will provide content and tell others about the website. A pastor might encourage other ministry leaders to make use of the services that the church web ministry has to offer. Instead of the web ministry workers spending time explaining why the church needs a website, they can spend more of their time working with others to improve the church website.