May 29, 2006

Congrats Jason!

The Church Report has named Jason Gant, our new youth pastor, as one of the top 20 youth ministers in the nation. Jason is awesome. All the pieces were in place before Jason came and now the ministry is exploding under his leadership. Youth pastors are my heroes because they tell kids about Jesus.

While we're on the subject of youth ministry ... props to Leo Johns, our jack-of-all-trades web guy, who helped put together our new youth ministry web site. Check it out.

May 25, 2006


Hey, I just now interrupted my work to post a link to an article I just now read about interruptions. How's that for self-referential?

Are any of you out there actually getting real work done? If so, please tell me how you do it. ;-)

May 24, 2006

Adobe Announces Non Profit Pricing

Since Macromedia was acquired by Adobe last year, people in the non profit world have been worried that Adobe's perceived hostilities toward non profits would eliminate the generous discount programs available for programs like Dreamweaver, Flash, etc.

Instead, it seems that in some part Macromedia's non profit commitment has won the day. Macromedia has had a long commitment to the educational and non profit space and my dealings with people at their headquarters have always been very positive.

I began to hear that the Adobe folks were listening to their position on non profits shortly after the merger was announced. Well the time is here. Adobe has announced significantly larger discounts on its product line including the ability to purchase standards such as the Creative suite for $400 (list around 900).

While the discounts aren't as deep as the Macromedia discounts, they are significant. One of the people close to the conversation is Sean McAtee at he works closely with the Adobe Non Profit Representative. I don't believe the prices have been posted yet but you can email him at

You can also read the Adobe Non-Profit program specifics here(PDF)

There was some discussion of this issue here as well

May 23, 2006

How people get recommendations about your church

Check out this post by Beta Church in which they quote an article from Fast Company about how people use the web to get opinions on products and services they're considering for purchase. No doubt people are going to the web for opinions on churches too. Large churches particularly need to be aware of what is being said about them online so they can become part of the conversation.

May 22, 2006

A downside to Feedburner

Dave Winer said some thought-provoking things yesterday about the potential negative consequences of using Feedburner to generate RSS feeds for your blog or podcast. Hmmm ... I'm using Feedburner heavily now, including on this blog (see the orange XML button there on the right?).

Along the same line of thought, I insist on registering all domains with a registrar of my choice, rather than allowing a hosting service to do it for me. If you don't control your domain registration, you don't control the domain. Do you really want to be dependent on a service provider that you're leaving in order to successfully move your site to a new provider? Me neither.

One caveat: doing this occasionally causes hassles when the hosting company needs to change IP addresses of their DNS servers since the provider's network operations people generally assume that they control the registration and DNS for all their clients. Any time they want to make this kind of change, they'll need to coordinate it with you to avoid a site outage.

May 14, 2006

NPR Story on The Da Vinci Code

I just now discovered that Jeff Kirby, one of our pastors, was featured in this NPR story on how Christians are responding to The Da Vinci Code. Cool!

May 04, 2006

Personal Content Networks

Richard McManus has an interesting post today about Superglu, a service that creates a site out of feeds from multiple sites such as blogs,, and Flickr. Called a "content aggregator," Superglu is a cool example of the kinds of things Web 2.o enables.

May 02, 2006

Worry about the big things AND the small things

Brian Bailey: "One of the biggest challenges of web development is balancing the big things and the small things. My goal is to get the main thing right while still being obsessive about the details."

That philosophy applies to most things we do in the church, not just web sites and applications.

Students view e-mail as outdated?

Ben Gray of Blog Ministry: "Realize that they [students] view email as outdated and almost useless. They only use it to communicate with authority figures. They use Myspace and IM to communicate with friends."