Monday, November 30, 2009

Resource Review - The Episcopal Church website

(This is part of a year long series of resource reviews I've been doing. 52 resources in 52 weeks. You can see all the reviews in one place here)

The Episcopal Church Welcomes You Home website of The Episcopal Church(TEC).

OVERALL - I've been holding off on doing this review because I'd been told that a new version of the web page was coming. Well they've missed two dates for completion so far. The latest word is that maybe for the New Year. SIGH. So I'm running the review I wrote originally for the current web site.

WHAT'S IT ABOUT? This is primarily intended as an information source and touchstone on the internet. As for youth ministry it can be a real resource as our young people (and we very often) try to find out way along and figure out what it means to be an Episcopalian. Because the site is intended to be much more than that it can be overwhelming. My best advice is to start in the "Visitors' Center" and take a look around. The surveys which form the basis for several of the articles there were done just a couple years back and offer a great look at who we really are. Then click on the "Evangelism & Congregational Life Center" because under the latest reorganization (of the web page at least)that's where you'll find "Youth Formation". Along with LOTS of other things.

RESERVATIONS (If you want a better way to stay up to date on youth ministry in TEC go to "Episcoyouth". This is a blog that Bronwyn is using to improve communication especially as we wait for the larger web site to be updated. Bookmark it!) To be honest the youth pages haven't been updated in a while and much of the resources available there are rather old. Still of pretty high quality but somewhat dated. (As an example under resources you'll find a report on the Episcopal Youth Event (EYE) from 2005. The last EYE was in 2008 but there's no report for it). The Youth office has undergone some major changes over the last year and the new person in that slot Bronwyn Clark Skov is working hard trying to figure out what to do first, next and whenever. (For transparency's sake I will admit proudly that I count Bronwyn as a friend. We worked together as Provincial Youth Ministry Coordinators for several years. She's a great and talented lady.)

RECOMMENDATION For the moment this site is what it is - clunky and outdated and behind schedule. I am biting my tongue to keep me from making any snarky comments but you can feel free to fill them in yourselves. If you're looking for information on TEC and what we believe and who we are and all kinds of resources there's no other place on the web to go. My hope is that the youth specific resources will be brought up to date as soon as possible. You should definitely have this site bookmarked.

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