Leaving a Digital Legacy

Memorial fountain that says "We will remember them"

Often churches take donations to purchase flowers for the altar; and a dedication is mentioned in the bulletin that week. Other churches may have a fundraiser where members purchase a brick that is inscribed with a loved one’s name. Tributes and memorials are way to honor and remember important people in our lives. Why not tie in your website so that memorials also live in the digital space.

So how can you preserve a digital legacy? There are several options I will explore in this article, including a memorial section, microsites, and even social media.

Memorial Section

If you bother to mention in your weekly bulletin that someone purchased flowers in honor of someone, you can certainly mention it on your website. Many churches allow congregation members to purchase flowers, inscribed bricks, or their name inscribed on a plaque. A photo with a digital camera or phone can easily put it on your website. You can mention the donor, the inscription, and/or the photo.

Memorial Microsite

As mentioned in a previous post on microsites, a separate memorial section might be advantageous. If you decide to go with a microsite, you can brand it differently and keep it separate from your main church website. Although the branding and hosting of a microsite might cost more, it could be supported by those willing to purchase a memorial space for a loved one.

Social Media

Instead of taking up server space on your own website, why not share photos of those inscribed bricks, flowers, of plaques on your favorite social media platform? On particular anniversaries those who purchased the memorial can share with their friends. They will not only deal with the grief associated with the loss, but also inadvertently promote your church.

Action Item

If you have an offline method of creating a memorial, do not keep it only there. Create a digital space for your congregation to remember loved ones. Not only will it be around just as long as a printed bulletin or inscribe brick; but it can be shared with others online. Thus your church and the healing message of Jesus will be spread to others. The best part is that these solutions often do not have a lot of overhead and extra costs.

Photo courtesy of Adrian van Leen

Author: Stephen Morrissey

I have been making websites since 1996, and using social media since 2006. My current profession is designing user experiences for corporate software, websites, and mobile applications. I started sharing my knowledge with the world in 2011, about a year after a revival in my faith.

2 thoughts on “Leaving a Digital Legacy”

  1. What a great idea. If it is presented in a way of respect and honor for them, as you’ve done in this article, it would appeal to so many people. Might be a difficult one for smaller or less technically-minded churches to adopt – mainly out of the tradition Memorial services hold in rural areas – but that isn’t a reason NOT to propose it to your church.

    Nice one Stephen.

  2. Unfortunately the idea came from a recent tragedy, as my grandfather suffered a stroke. Although he is doing well and on the road to recovery, I thought about having flowers purchased in his name. This of course sped my brain along to this article. Thanks for the encouragement!

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