A large group of the church's members worked to create the site over the spring and summer, at the instigation of June Herold, a former executive with America Online, an Internet service and media company.
, who joined the congregation in February, holds patents in social technology and social media, advises nonprofits, and also creates social networks for them.
for its interactive features and then heavily customized it.
It went online in September.
"Our site represents a paradigm shift in marketing," says Herold
"The beauty of this way of doing social networking is that our members are producing a lot of our content," says Masters. In the works, says Herold
, will be an online ministry council to oversee the online church.
Are there results?
After two-and-a-half months, more than 5,000 unique individuals are visiting the site at least monthly, looking at a total of 35,000 "page views," meaning they're going past the front page.
"On the old site people mostly did not go past the front page," says Herold
"Now there are a lot more reasons to go deeper.
The church community itself--members and friends--is around 1,400.
presented a sermon in October on "sacred presence" online.
called it "Enter, Rejoice, Sign In and Commune.