May 2013

Spot the difference

Did you notice it? On the front page, that is. If you didn’t, have another look. Web addresses are so ubiquitous that it is so easy not to notice another one, but if you look, you will see lurking under the banner the slogan www.bmgparishes.org.uk

Now, before you get too excited, this is not a finished product, and I am sure that much still needs to be done – of which more later – but I hope that what we have so far will work very well as a website for our benefice.

But why, you may ask, do we need one? That is an important question and I should make it clear right from the start that if the answer was ‘everybody else has one’ we would have gone no further forward. The first reason – and the one which affects our community most – is the simple one of communication. The website allows us to let anyone know what is going on here – the calendar section is excellent  – and why we are doing it. It also allows us to communicate last minute information effectively. I was very aware over Holy Week and Easter when the Palm Sunday Procession and the Dawn Eucharist had to be cancelled that jungle drums might not be the best way of getting emergency news about. I know of two people who turned up for the Procession and dreaded having some irate person banging on my door at an unearthly hour on Easter morning.

Which brings me to a second reason. A number of people come to services and events here from well outside the area, and, of course, people come here for holidays. How do we expect them to find out what is going on in our parishes - or even where our churches are? We have a duty to minister to everyone here whether they live here, work here or visit here, and making it easy for everyone to find out what is going on is the most obvious example of this.

But the website does - and will continue to - need development. As a general plea, it would be good to have photographs of events taking place here which can be uploaded to the site. Also, comments about possible improvements or additions will be very gratefully received. More specifically, one person has done all the work on the site so far and bitter experience has taught that any system which only one person knows how to operate is doomed to failure. So offers to help will be gratefully received. It is an incredibly easy site on which to work: if a complete website novice can get it this far, just imagine what two or three could do. Please let me know.