Headquartered in Charlotte, NC, Elevation Church is led by Steven Furtick. This new church may have one of the sharpest and most comprehensive web ministries overall of any church in this series yet. It’s easy to navigate, but in preparing to write this article, I quickly experienced the “jawdrop” factor, wondering how a new church was able to afford/create sites of such depth and appeal. They have clearly given quite a lot of attention to detail.
- They had 121 people at their first service, which is nothing to sneeze at. They are also forming an intentional network of other like-minded church plants which they call the Ground Level Network. Looks interesting, but there doesn’t seem to be any information about how to “join” or network with them.
- I liked the “flashiness” of the site, and was initially concerned that tech may have replaced substance, but was relieved to find that upon following their “Basic” link, a broad strategy of communication and short, mind-appealing theology-bites (akin to soundbytes) presented the innards of Elevation in an easy-to-understand way. From there, you can see their Core Values, Beliefs, distinctives, and history.
- Clicking on “the plan” link also revealed a strategy of crowd, community groups, and children’s ministry that seemed very similar to Journey’s.
- The “connect” tab was also helpful and informative, but clicking on the links there was where the “cool factor” of the site ended, and you were presented with good information, albeit in a rather drab (as compared to the rest of the site) way.
- You can watch or listen to past sermon series, give online, and go deeper. There is, however, little to no site interactivity. I really think that’s what makes some church websites more dynamic than others these days. People want the ability to feel part of your church community, even on an online level.
- There was also very few pictures of people. You had to go to the church’s blog (which is very well done) to begin seeing them. I kept wondering who was behind all this besides Furtick. Of course, their June 10, 2007 entry was humbling and exciting:
71 people gave their lives to Christ this Sunday.
- There is also an “access: elevation” blog which seems to address societal concerns and other hot topics? I wasn’t real sure about what its purpose is. The latest post when I visited was about a minister’s housing allowance. Not exactly inspirational for the masses, but I confess, I read it.
As always, please respond to your own impressions of this church’s site.
- What is attractive about the site?
- What can you tell about the substance of the church from the site?
- If you lived in the area and were not a church member, would this church’s site be something that might lead you to investigate further? Why or why not?
- What do you not like about the site?
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