Posting has been light due to the usual excuses—too many commitments, too little time. One of the current commitments is my appointment to the Communications Committee of our parish. The first order of business is quite clear: build an effective web page and get our Facebook presence to where it ought to be!
As a result, I’ve been thinking a bit about church websites. I find myself in what I believe to be a fairly typical situation. I’m a volunteer with some good technical knowledge but with a limited amount of time, no budget, and the clear sense that someone other than me (or perhaps in addition to me) will be needed to enter material into the site. Furthermore, related to cost constraints, the site is being hosted by the diocese. Inquiries to the web guy at the diocese concerning the space we’re allowed and whether there is any MySQL support have not been answered. So here’s where we are:
- There is a space for us on a server (bonus!).
- It’s safest to assume no MySQL support (bummer). This means that the usual content management systems (CMS) apps like Drupal or Joomla are not an option.
- Since the server is running at least PHP5, there is native SQLite support which means that I can use a light-weight database (bonus!). I don’t think I’ll try a custom CMS just based on time and possible server demands, but if there are some basic dbase uses, I can leverage it.
- Diocesan support seems limited: I asked about a set of recommendations or best-practices from the guy at the offices and, again, no response (bummer).
- I know some great folks who’ve been through this exercise before (bonus!)—if the diocese can’t come up with or circulate a set of best practices, maybe we can.
Anybody have some thoughts they want to kick out, sites to link to or other suggestions?