Last May, after ten years of excellent service, Dr. Charles Nurse, ODNW resigned as the webmaster and host of the diocesan website, www.vancouver.anglican.ca effective the end of 2014.
Creating and designing a new website for the diocese is a daunting task. Not only have digital protocols and priorities changed drastically (with 70% of page views now on mobile devices) but the huge amount of content on the site which remains of interest to many needs to be archived but remain accessible. We are also in the first year of Bishop Melissa Skelton’s episcopacy and our bishop has made it clear that the Diocese of New Westminster’s priority is Parish Development. The new site needs to reflect and facilitate that ministry.
After six months of study and research, diocesan communications with the blessing of senior diocesan staff contracted with Church OS of North Vancouver to be the designers and hosts of the new diocesan website. Church OS has constructed a number of Anglican Church websites in the D of NW and in other dioceses and the digital presence they have supplied for these worshipping communities has been met with positive reactions from clergy, leaders, staff, congregations, newcomers and seekers.
As of this writing in late October the main structure of the site has been designed in order that content can be added and improvements to the design and functionality considered and evaluated. There are many changes to the diocesan web presence but the two most significant at this point in the site’s development are:
1. The merging of all four of the current diocesan sites: thegoodsteward.ca; vancouveranglican.com (aka Screening in Faith); holidayservices.ca (worship and events listings for Advent/Christmas/Epiphany and Lent/Holy Week/Easter), the Anglican Archives site and of course vancouver.anglican.ca the principal site.
2. The development of 68 Parish pages that will allow D of NW parishes to keep their own information current and easily accessible to all.
The new site will be Diocesan Website 3.0 and could be on line as early as mid-December but at its launch it will continue to be a work in progress, a tool under constant development to better serve the Parishes of the Diocese, their mission and ministry and the mission and ministry of our Bishop. Please keep those working on this project in your thoughts and prayers while this important work continues.