web design

4) Our Creative Arts Associate Still Prefers CloverSites —

Starting up your website? Looking for a place to refresh it with a new and vibrant look? Our Creative Arts Associate at Team Expansion still prefers Clover. See the possibilities at…




Yes, there are other “database-driven” alternatives, some of which are less investment. Clover will set you back, like, $1000. After that initial investment, the monthly cost is fairly low. But our Creative Arts gal is convinced — for those who like an attractive, easy-to-use site, she’s convinced that nothing beats it. “It’s just easy to use and I can make it look the way I want it to look.” There are lots of custom templates from which to choose… and lots of ‘tools’ or ‘widgets’ that can help you implement special functions. Check it out. You just might like it too. (Truth in recommending: After we chose Clover and began using it — and liked it — we learned that they give donations to those who pass along their name to others. So we then signed up for that program. But this was *after* we proactively and intentionally picked it as being the “best of field” for our purposes. See the Team Expansion website, presented via Clover (as a sample of what you can do with their tools), at…



2) What Makes for a Great Website: See Partners Int’l —

Over the past few months, I’ve been trying to watch out for great websites among ministries and missions. I’ve formed some general conclusions; see if you agree.

*** The front page should be living and vibrant: By that, I mean it should change… *often*. At least once a week, if not more so. If it stays the same, your site is already dead. Take the Partners Int’l front page:


There are giant pictures with lots of face shots. You can look into the eyes of *people*. But notice how that it’s not just an art show. Every shot links to something unique on their site. Sponsoring a child, watching a mobilization video, providing relief for Indonesia — it all leads to deeper levels in the site.

*** The front page should reveal stories about people: I’m convinced… if a front page *only* becomes an art show, the site hasn’t done its job. I’m convinced that the front page needs to reveal *story* lines. Back to Partners Int’l for instance. “Meet our indigenous ministry partners” shares stories about people from various places. “News from the field” gives news updates, the “President’s blog” let’s the leader express a byline, and “Today’s Prayer Request” leads to tons of current and previous prayer needs.

*** The menu structure should be simple, clean, & meaningful: Back to Partners, how could one say it any better? “Who we are,” “What we do,” and “Where we work,” along with “News & Blog,” “Get involved!” and “Contact us.”

*** Give clear pathways for donating: Once again, Partners shines in this area. “Sponsor a child,” “Partner,” “Harvest of Hope,” and “Donate Now,” all at the top right, plainly visible, clearly set apart.

When I grow up, I’d want my website to be so perfect. 100%. A+.

How ’bout you? What do you look for in a ministry/mission website? Just follow the link below to the online version of this item, then click “Comment” and have at it.

1) The #1 Flashiest Website Around: Clover is Easy, Snazzy, Fast

Yesterday I asked my two sons what they thought about the new Team Expansion website, now staged at CloverSites:


They *raved*. One son (the 20-year-old) said, “Dad, I’ll be a missionary with Team Expansion now that your website is this cool.” :-) OK… maybe his comment was tongue-in-cheek (although he *is* actually leading a summer team for us this summer), but the truth is, they really did like it. What’s more, it’s really easy, really fast, and really has a lot of potential. If you’d like to see some of the available features, take a look at:

http://www.cloversites.com/features-for-all-our-church-websites and


Those are all included in the base rate of $20/month.

I don’t know of a single, solitary more effective web-authoring solution for the non-web-professional. Just browse to…


to get started. Remember, even though it’s flash, the folks at Clover have developed a method of showing text to search engines, so your site will be very search-engine-friendly. And there are even more upgrades to come… and you’ll get them all for the same low monthly price once they’re finished. (What’s more, Clover gives a tithe of all the start-up feel to Brigada… so when you use the best website, you’re also helping power-up Brigada.)

6) Need a Great Website Tonight?

Never Fear. Clover is here. Check ’em out at…


See all the features they have now, as well as the new features they’ll have starting Apr. 28th in their “2.0” service (which will be the same price, by the way; and current users will be upgraded automatically for free).


I personally have set up two different sites with this service. Like fallin’ off a log. Try them. Unlike other flash-based sites, the folks at Clover have figured out how to optimize flash for search engines. Hard to believe? Just go to your favorite search engine and put in, in quotes, the phrase “Multiply the Momentum”. Odds are, the first site listed out of 280,000 will be one of my Cloversites. (mtm2010.com) I’m tellin’ ya — they’re good. What’s more, they’re *fast*. Yes, the $1000 set-up fee is hefty, but after that, you pay just $20/mo. But the best part is, your site will pop. Graphics, pictures, text — it’ll all be easy to update and will look great.

3) Best Bet for an Attractive, Easy-to-Use Church/Agency Website

I’ve gone on record saying, “I don’t know of a single, solitary more effective web-authoring solution for the non-web-professional.” Just browse to…


and be sure to notice the upgrades they’ll do in April — to “Greenhouse 2.0.” Interestingly, once these new capabilities come online, some web-professionals might start using Clover as well, just because it’ll be so much easier than anything else… yet it’ll look like they did the site professionally, in Flash.

3) Are You the “Artsy Type?” Try Clover

I continue to be high on Clover. (Not the weed, mind you.) Check them out at…


They have a *bundle* of new features coming out. Check them out at…


A new media player (that will automatically play your videos), a new calendar, podcasting, font-sizing, linkable pictures, passworded pages, the ability to refer to each page with a link even though it’s flash, a dedicated staff page, “slide show” objects and photo albums, and even automatic forms! Not bad for $20/month. Granted, the initial sign-up fee is stiff ($1000), but I ask you: How many of us could program flash-oriented high-tech pages like these… so fast! They even have real humans who answer the phone and help you, if you can ever think of anything to ask. Most of it is so intuitive, you’ll probably never need the tech support anyway. And by the way, all those new upgrades will be instant and free — and they’ll take care of it for you. As for uploading webpages, all you need is your browser… nothing to install, no plug-ins to download. Easy as that. Pick from dozens of templates and be up and running *tonight*.

(Please be sure to use the link above so they’ll know Brigada sent you their way. We would have recommended them anyway — and that’s the truth — but this way, it’s the best of both worlds: You get a snazzy, quick, world-class website, and Brigada ends up with a gift as a result of your good choice! By the way, they’ve already sent their first gift! So thanks to those who chose to try them out!)

8) Don’t Overlook Clover Websites — (Thankful for their Gifts)

cloverWe’re grateful this week for Carter (of Crossroads) and Michael (of Suzhou), both of whom signed up recently for Cloversites… which resulted in thank-you gifts from Cloversites to Brigada… to the tune of $100 each! Can you believe it? These two new friends become two new True Friends of Brigada, and they get a website to show for it! Gotta love it! We still recommend Cloversites very highly… and are about to purchase a second site with them. To get a look at the options, just browse to…


and see their feature list at


Also see their list of expected upgrades in version 2.0, expected in January:


Once those upgrades happen, it’ll be hard to beat Cloversites, in my humble opinion. (We would have said that regardless… and have bought a new site there for a new unreached peoples / fundraising campaign we’re doing…


2) Cloversites: Quick, Easy, Effective

cloverIf you’re considering developing or switching your web presence, take a look at…


See their feature list at…


I completed my first webpages there in a matter of *minutes*. Honest. And the tech support people have been stellar. I actually got a call from a real human (who knew how to use the tools on the site and spoke clearly), just to ask if I had any questions. She pulled up my new site while she was on the phone with me and even complemented me on how rapidly I had rolled it out (most in one evening). Check it out at:


I’ve sent 3 emails to the customer support line, partly just to see if they would answer. They’re batting 100%… and once, I left a voicemail which they didn’t return until the next business day and — get this — they apologized! They all must be Christians… or at least Christian-friendly. The whole site is designed custom for church- or mission-use. You can choose from several templates and post media at the drop of a hat — imagine your workshops, classes, sermons, and presentations, all instantly available to your organization or church members. Everything is so intuitive, nobody needs a guidebook. Everything is jazzy flash, yet loads quickly and is extremely search engine friendly. Their price? Always exactly $1000. That’s it. Afterward, pay a small monthly web-hosting fee ($20/mo for the first 100 gig). If you’re already considering switching web hosts anyway, please try Cloversites. If you’re starting up, for sure — please give them a chance. I haven’t found anything better on the web. On top of all that, they have a very clear and purposeful roadmap to the future. See …


As you can see, they’re adding a plethora of feature, all in the next few weeks, too. Passworded pages, the ability to refer to each page with a link even though it’s flash, “slide show” objects, photo galleries, font control, and much, much more. Not bad for $20/month. And all those upgrades will be instant and free. You never have to do any upgrading to the site yourself.

(Please be sure to use the link above so they’ll know Brigada sent you their way. We would have recommended them anyway — and that’s the truth — but this way, it’s the best of both worlds: You get a snazzy, quick, world-class website, and Brigada ends up with a gift as a result of your good choice! By the way, they’ve already sent their first gift! So thanks to those who chose to try them out!)

1) Same-Day Websites For Ministry

Ministries without staff to build a website on their own or the budget to hire a design firm can leverage Web-Site-Now to get a template-based site up within hours. Perfect for starter sites or special events. Owner Michael is a PCA elder and an automation zealot for over 25 years.

Websites start at $249 and are built using the popular open source WordPress platform. Michael’s engineers reserve the site name, load the software, and apply the style. Change the style of your site free for thirty days. Buyers own, not rent their new website. What’s more, you can become an Affiliate and pick up $50 per sale of the websites. For more info, browse to…


or email

2) Tune In To The Bloggers Among Us

Remember that discussion on blogging (Feb. 1, 2009, “For the Bloggers among us”) ? It’s turned into quite a stream of responses — from samples of great blogs to instructions on how to do it. Check it out at:


Got an additional comment? You can even log on to share in total confidence, anonymously.

To comment on this item, why not go back to:


4) Inexpensive And Easy-To-Use Websites

I saw this item in the Perspectives alumni publication, sent out by Gloria Sewall. (Thanks Gloria.) She pointed us to MinistryHome.org


because they offer a safe and ministry-driven alternative to social networking sites. According to Gloria, “Individuals serving in the field can promote their ministry, raise funds, build teams, and network with like-minded individuals online, sending automatic notification of updates to friends and supporters. If you are looking for a good website system, and are looking for an easier way to keep in touch with your home team learn out more at www.MinistryHome.org.” (To get the Perspectives alumni publication — well, I guess you’ll have to take Perspectives! :-) )

2) How Would You Advise This Mission Team To Respond?

Here’s a mission team in a Muslim land with 6 local volunteers who are wanting to help answer 400 emails from seekers that are starting to rot in our inbox. After finding them, the team put together a pretty good plan for getting them access to computers/DSL/VPNs, etc. But now they need a secure way for these volunteers to access the emails, then respond to, and finally send them. To bypass the issue of whole disk encryption this all needs to happen online. If this system had some nifty capacity to manage/limit user account, route all incoming messages back into the central in-box, etc. that would be ideal. In some ways, this sounds, in part, like a Customer-relation management software package, but the team has no full-time I.T. guy, so the solution has to be easy to implement. Any easy solutions? If so, just click on “comment” below to leave your response. They’d be very grateful.

5) Try Irfanview: A New Way To Convert Email Addresses To The Web

Perhaps you’ve noticed the new way we’re converting email addresses for use in Brigada’s website. We first tried an online conversion program, but because several users feared that it was somehow going to keep track of the email addresses (and spam them), we switched to a new approach where we use a piece of software running locally. That software, a free program, is something you can download and use as well. It serves as a graphical viewer — and a great one at that. The name of the program is Irfanview. Find it at:


Note that its publishers claim that IrFanView is one of the most popular file viewers in the world. Imagine that … and it’s free (for non-profit use). Anyway, for our own use here, at the advice of a reader, we just copy the email address to the clipboard, paste it into IrfanView, then immediately post the resulting graphic to the respective web page by using any FTP software. (If you don’t know what that is, maybe better get some help first.) By changing email addresses to a *picture*, instead of text, we’re leaving spammers out to lunch, yet you can still copy down the address for your resulting email.


Gladvocate by Blue Dove Web Design is designed and priced for small Christian organizations and mission/ministry teams. More than a website, Gladvocate combines easy to use tools for adding text content and images, slideshows, video & audio, a full function e-mail newsletter builder and sending engine, online contributions and more. It is easy to use and powerful for creating web and email campaigns to mobilize casual viewers into active partners in ministry. Initial website setup for a ministry team is only $200 and hosting for web and e-newsletter engine is $20 /month. For more details contact


bluedovedesigns(dot)com [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address(es), please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with . then reassemble the address onto one line] or go to


20071125 Brigada Today

In this issue…


  1. WHAT DO YOU THINK OF POLYGAMY? — OK… remember my two sons? They’re at it again. Today at lunch they started asking me about polygamy. Well I knew to tell them that elders and deacons should just have one wife. But what do I tell them — scripturally — about marriages in countries that *allow* polygamy legally? I know it’s a problem, when missionaries confront new cultures where polygamy is dominant. Christianity arrives, the missionaries teach monogamy, and — what does that say to existing believers who are already married to 4 wives? If you have an answer… or a good scriptural response (especially one in the New Testament), please browse to


    and click on “comments” at the bottom. Thanks for any help you can give.

  2. MOBILE VERSION OF POWEROFCONNECTING — On the go? Grab some info on Partnership!” visionSynergy has created a mobile (or cell phone) companion to its PowerofConnecting website, which is viewed by people from over 145 countries. See it at


    To see what it looks like, use Testiphone’s simulator at…


    View the growing number of iPhone-optimized mobile sites at the Religion section of AppsSafari, at


    PowerofConnecting’s main site, a trove of mission partnership and networking resources and advice, is at


    (Thanks Dave!)

  3. NEW MISSIONS TEXTBOOK TEACHES PROPER PERSPECTIVE ON MUSLIMS — Charles Gailey and Charles Gailey have just released their new work, “Discovering Missions,” an introductory textbook on world evangelism. The book examines the biblical foundations for global outreach, outlines the history of world evangelism, and has chapters on the globalization of the church, the implications of culture, the importance of language in gospel communication, short-term missions, the missionary call, mobilizing the local church and a peek at some future trends.

    Institutions wanting to look at “Discovering Missions” as a possible textbook may order a copy for half price by writing on institutional letterhead to: Teresa Eller, 2923 Troost Ave., Kansas City, MO, USA 64109, or by faxing a request to: 816-531-0923. Upon adoption as a text, the charge will be canceled. The book is also available at discount prices on such sites as Amazon.com.

    One of the co-authors, Howard Culbertson, is putting together a CD of teaching/learning resources. Professors that adopt the textbook can get that CD free by contacting the author through his website:


  4. HELP IN UNDERSTANDING INSURANCE — If you need help in sorting through international health insurance visit


    and click on “Tips for Understanding International Health Insurance.” You will find over 150 articles dealing with international health insurance. Also, if you want a short understanding of Medicare coverage browse


    or email jeff(at)gninsurance

    (dot)com or call 480/813-9100. [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address(es), please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with . then reassemble the address onto one line.] Call toll free in the USA, 866/636-9100. Visit


  5. GET GLOBAL INTEL REPORTS FOR FREE VIA “STRATFOR” — Have you tried it? Our Global Security Coordinator and our New Fields guy both glean resources from it regularly. Browse to:


    Funny… They’ve been using it for years, but it wasn’t until a friend reminded me of it that I realized we haven’t mentioned it in Brigada Today for quite some time. (Thanks Steve!!!) Give it a try; if you want to stay up to date about how global politics are affecting the country where *you* work, odds are, you’ll love Stratfor.

  6. OUTREACH LITERATURE — SOON Ministries has spare capacity to add any of your ministry’s not-yet-Christian contacts (e.g. BCC or radio ministry inquirers) to their mailing list of their easy-English outreach paper SOON or their similar papers in African French, Swahili and Fulani dialects. Larger quantities of these papers are available to national workers and missionaries for outreach:


    (Thanks Tony!)

  7. IMPROVE YOUR CHURCH WEBSITE — Internet Evangelism Day’s self- assessment tool for church websites now provides a free 15-page evaluation report that can transform the effectiveness of your site:


    (Thanks for that referral too, Tony!)

  8. TRAIN AS A STRATEGY COORDINATOR — If you intend to design platforms for ministry and launch new outreaches among unreached peoples, the upcoming Strategic Coordinator Seminar to be held in Perth, Australia, 18th February to 7th March 2008. Coming from Hong Kong are guest speakers who will share from their experiences as Strategic Coordinators. Seasoned trainers, they have many stories of how God has used them – and others – as facilitators for evangelism, church planting and community transformation. This one is shaping up to be a challenging and exciting time. So don’t delay. Apply now before time runs out. Download an application here:


    Or email the Registrar to have an application sent to you:


    (dot)org(dot)au [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address(es), please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with . and reassemble the address onto one line.]

  9. AMAZING FEELING OF MOTIVATION — I’ll have to admit… it’s an amazing feeling of encouragement and motivation when Brigada receives gifts such as a $500 push from a member of Arab World Ministries. Isn’t it kind of ironic that the people who work in some of the toughest places on earth end up with some of the least kudos, partly because they can’t even tell people about their progress? Think about it. When they start being really successful, that’s when they could get in the biggest trouble! So here’s a big prayer of thanks for *all* those who are working in the dry places on earth… in the spiritually parched portions of the planet. Please take this opportunity, on behalf of *all* of them, to offer up a prayer of thanks for those who labor in Jesus- darkness, with hopes of being able to live as a still small voice on behalf of a loving savior.

    Thanks, too, to Peninsula Bible Church in Cupertino, California! $200 will go a *long* way… a *very* long way, in fact, toward helping us finish 2007 strong! Thank you!!!

  10. HELP US FINISH STRONG? — The gifts above, added to last edition’s total of $9817.90, bring our 2007 total to $10,517.90. That’s *tremendous*, but is there anyone out there that could help us even try to match 2006’s outcome of $15,096 ? Would you ask your church, group, family, or your own bank account to chip in, if not for you, then for someone overseas who can’t? If so, thanks!!! Just click on the “Sponsor/Donate” page. Really, we only need 92 more people, groups, or churches. Would you be one of those 92??? We have 6 more days left, counting today. If you *can’t* give, would you be willing to ask someone who might? We really only need *one* person to give $1000. Would you be willing to be that one person? As we say above, we’ve made progress, but still need the following gifts to meet our needs…

    1 of 1 more gift of $1000
    2 of 5 more gifts of $500
    8 of 250 more gifts of $250
    5 of 13 more gifts of $100
    20 of 27 more gifts of $50
    56 of 70 more gifts of $25

    You can pull the money from your PayPal account or from any major credit card. Or if you prefer, send a check payable to Team Expansion to: Team Expansion (Brigada secretary), 13711 Willow Reed Dr., Louisville, KY 40299. (Team Expansion is a 501(c)3 incorporation so for USA citizens, your checks made out to Team Expansion are tax-deductible.) As always, be sure to let us know if you’d like us to promote any particular service or ministry, or if you’d prefer your gift be anonymous. And thank you in advance for helping.

  11. THE BACKPAGE: LIFE IMPROVED IN 2007; TAKE SPAM FOR INSTANCE — Throughout the years, we’ve written quite a lot about spam here in Brigada. (If you’ve been visiting your aunt on Mars for the past 15 years, we’re using the word, “spam”, to describe unsolicited email messages — junk email.) Funny that after all these years, our office finally switched in 2007 to software that allows us to use Outlook. For the first time in my life, I’m finally seeing what Outlook can *do*! It has automatically classified 754 messages as spam in just the past few days. That doesn’t even count the spam that was caught before that by our office’s server-side spam-catcher. Shew.

    So here’s what I’m learning about spam:
    *** Ask your office leadership to install a server-side spam removal tool. Your ISP might be able to give you advice about how to install that. They might even do it *for* you for a small fee of $50 or so. Well worth it.

    *** Try to position yourself to use Outlook. If possible, upgrade to Outlook 2007. I’m convinced its spam removal tools are the best in the industry now.

    *** Configure your email client *not* to download images in emails. Sure you’ll miss all the glitz and glamour. But half of those images are designed to be “bugs” to see if you really open your mail, so the address is verified. Besides, do you *really* want to see those Victora Secret ads? (Get Outlook.)

    *** Configure your email client to ask you before it sends a receipt saying you opened the email. If it’s a personal friend, you can click ‘yes’. If it’s a spammer, you don’t want to say yes. (Get Outlook.)

    *** Whenever a piece of spam *does* get through the gate, tell your email client that it’s spam. With Outlook, that keystroke might be Alt-A|J|B. That stands for clicking “Actions” in the top-line menu, then “Junk email”, “Add Sender to Blocked Sender’s list”. (Get Outlook.)

    *** Check your Junk email folder sometimes. (Yawn. :-) )

    *** Remind your friends that if they send you too many forwarded messages about someone stealing kidneys from a man in an iced bathtub in Portland, you might someday become careless and accidentally hit Alt- A|J|B on one of their emails. (Oops! :-) ) In other words, please be judicious about what you forward. And please *do* ask your friends before you subscribe them to newsletters or email lists. Otherwise, we all become part of the spam problem.

    So with Outlook, suddenly, spam just isn’t that big of a deal to me any more. I used to get 100 or 200 messages a day. Now, 100-150 of those are going in my junk mail folder. Hurray!!!!!!!!!!!!! Life *has* gotten better in 2007!

    Has life improved for *you* in 2007? If so, tell us how. Just log on at:


    to tell your story about how life improved in 2007… or about your battle (hopefully victory?) against spam. Thanks!

20061231 Brigada Today

In this issue…


  1. AMAZING DIFFERENCE-MAKERS — Thanks to the students at Southern Baptist Seminary in Louisville, KY, from the GIAL program…


    which is a dual-degree (M. Div. in Missions and Bible Translation from Southern Baptist and an M.A. in applied Linguistics from GIAL). One couple sent $25 while they were students there. We also received several anonymous donations, including $25, $50 from a YWAMmer in Europe, $100, $60, $100, $50 from Deeper Roots (write them at hlisechataoldotcom ), plus $76.40 from Good Neighbor Insurance. Learn more about their offers at…


    Blessed Hope Communications sent $21.83 for Aug. & Sept. ’06 long distance commissions (from Brigada Today participants who signed up for long distance with their service; Thank you for talking!). To learn more or sign up, just visit:


    We’re very grateful to World Indigenous Missions for a $100 gift to keep us going. Learn more about their work at…


    (but as this Brigada goes out the door, that site is not responding).

    Finally, thanks for Bill’s donation of $100 to help Brigada keep pumping out issues. Bill is affiliated with “Into All the World”, which invites any and all who want mission input in Canada to look them up at


    Several other anonymous donors chipped in with gifts of $25, 50, 50, 100, 25, 50, 50, 300, and $25. One of those was from Italy. Several operate various ministries. We appreciate all of them.

  2. SO HOW’D WE DO FINANCIALLY IN 2006? — We did well. We didn’t make our budget. But we did better than before. As of last edition, we had a total of $13,244.74 in 2006 income. Another $1383.23 came in over the past 10 days, making a total of $14,627.97 for 2006. This represents an increase of more than $3600 in giving over 2005… so that’s a good thing. Unfortunately, it was only 88% of our 2006 budget. Let’s just hope that in 2007, we can get the word out earlier and more effectively. But it was a *resounding* last 3 weeks. Thank you one and all!

  3. BIBLE TRANSLATION, LITERACY AND SCRIPTURES IN AUDIO — Both Bible translation and Literacy efforts are foundational tasks. The ultimate goal of every literacy program should be to help people read the translated Scriptures in their language. The advent of the digital Talking Bible dramatically increases the speed in which that goal can be realized. The new digital Talking Bible’s instant “search and find” feature enables the reader to select any chapter, match it with the audio and read while listening. The digital Talking Bible NT is available in English, Spanish, Bengali and a growing number of other languages. For more info visit


    or contact info(at)talkingbibles(dot)org [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address(es), please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .]

  4. FREE BOOKS TO MISSIONARIES WAITING FOR PICKUP IN NASHVILLE — Lewis and Elsbeth have a thousand various volumes, waiting for missionaries to come by and browse for free pickup. See Brigada on the web for a picture of their shelves. If you’re a missionary on furlough (home service) in the USA, stop by Franklin, TN (suburban Nashville) to check out their stash. For more information, write them directly at:

    Codingt(at)aol(dot)com [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address(es), please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .]

    When he’s not giving away books to missionaries, Lewis serves as Int’l Development Coordinator for CLC


  5. CHURCH WEBSITE ASSESSMENT TOOL — It is an unfortunate truth that a great many church websites are not really user-friendly to outsiders. Yet there are a range of factors that can make a church site far more effective in reaching the community. A new self-assessment scoring tool is available to help a church identify areas of their site that might need adjustment. See it at…


    (Thanks Tony! For all the times you pitch in ideas, we appreciate you!)

  6. RAISE YOUR FULL SUPPORT IN 8 TO 10 MONTHS — Raising support doesn’t have to be a terrifying ordeal and it doesn’t need to take two or three years to bring your support up to 100%. KCT will send you all the equipment you need to join with others in live, multipoint sessions that work as if you were all in the same room together. The training takes 1 1/2 hrs/day, 4 days/week for 3 weeks. Give Jerry a call at (503) 314-7211, or email jerry(at)kingdomcometraining(dot)com [As a means of preventing spam for our contributors, in the preceding email address(es), please replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .]


  7. E-NEWSLETTER FOR MOBILIZERS — Interchange Postings is a free, monthly newsletter published by Catalyst Services at:


    Designed primarily for mission agency personnel involved in agency- church collaboration, Postings is a source of current information and practical ideas for anyone helping churches mobilize.

    Past issues of Postings (also available online) have addressed the P.E.A.C.E. Plan and how to prepare for it, the exploding opportunities of BAM (Business as Mission), the facilitator’s role in partnerships, and what churches expect from agency mobilizers. The Catalyst website also details other services for mission agencies looking to strengthen their collaboration with local churches.

  8. IF YOU’RE CONTRIBUTING TO BRIGADA… — Please turn off those fancy quotes. They’re a killer for those viewing through basic email text. Also, you can help us by sticking to the 8-or-so-line maximum. If your item is over that, you’ll likely get edited anyway. So it might as well be you who picks out what goes in. In fact, see the full formatting instructions by browsing Brigada then clicking on “Submit an item” in the top menu.

  9. BEST READS FOR 2006 (ACCORDING TO SHAUM) — Our ministry has relied regularly on input form Barnabas Int’l for member care ideas and, in particular, on Scott Shaum. His “best reads list” for 2006 is typical of his work… relational, caring, and deep-thinking stuff. Get it at


    (Note that if you want to browse or purchase a particular book, just click on the title and you’ll be taken to Amazon’s offering of that book on the Amazon website. If you use this link to purchase the book, Amazon will make a very small donation to Brigada. But please take note that your purchase price would be the same either way.) Thanks again Scott!

  10. UNDERGIRD BRIGADA IN 2007 — Want to get Brigada off to a great start in 2007? Remember… once we reach the financial need for a particular year, we stop mentioning money and any additional funds that come in will apply toward the next year’s budget. So… buy out this space in the first month and we’ll have more space for regular items each week! :-) Either way, just click on “Sponsor/Donate” in the top menu (to use PayPal or a credit card), or if you prefer, send a check payable to Team Expansion to: Team Expansion (Brigada secretary), 13711 Willow Reed Dr., Louisville, KY 40299. (Team Expansion is a 501(c)3 incorporation so for USA citizens, your checks made out to Team Expansion are tax- deductible.) As always, be sure to let us know if you’d like us to promote any particular service or ministry, or if you’d prefer your gift be anonymous. And thank you in advance for helping.

  11. THE BACKPAGE: MOBILIZE YOUR CHURCH VIA SKITS? — This past week, I was helping my local church prepare to do a missions skit for later this month. First I looked for Christian skit ideas. I started at

    http://www.missionresources.com/drama.html then zeroed in on

    http://www.dramatix.org/Linkpages/Missions.html and finally landed on


    But these lines didn’t grab me. So then I went to…

    http://www.joshuaproject.net/index.php to find some better stats.

    Printed the stats page at


    then made a copy for each missions committee member, just to give everybody the bigger picture at the Missions committee meeting. I also zoomed in on


    to give them a close-up of one particular people group.

    I then sent PDF copies of the skit, the global stats, the people group closeup to the committee so they could read through it in advance.

    By the way, after the presentation, I’ll write the author of the skit in New Zealand, thank him for his work, and send him a copy of the revised script the way we did it.

    For what it’s worth… Doug

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