Building A New Website

screen-shot-2016-11-21-at-10-32-34-amI took a risk. Riverwood has challenged my technical abilities as a graphic designer, and one of the first changes I wanted to make was the functionality of the website. Our old website was hard to navigate and looked horrible on a mobile device. In this day and age, a church’s website is a powerful tool online. Not only is it one of the first things that come up if you do a Google search looking for local churches, but people get to see the first look at your church’s online presence. So with the novice web development and coding experience I had, I initiated the update.

So, here it is: Riverwood’s new website. Our creative team and senior leaders met about overall planning, structure, getting rid of our old site, coding, designing, and figuring out why we even needed a website— and finally, after about a year of working on it, we’ve finished!

In the early development stages, we’ve focused on who the website is intended to target. In our previous site, we made the mistake of putting almost an entire slideshow of announcements for regular attendees. Yes, our church has a lot of people who want to know what’s going on around here, but we decided to focus the front page of our new website for individuals who are looking for a church or are new to the faith. Our church has been focusing on the word “community.” We encourage everyone to find a Worship Community, a Small Group Community, and a Serving Community; to be fully engaged in the church as Jesus intended!

We use the phrase “Welcome Home” because who doesn’t want to be greeted like they’re at home? We adopted the term “Welcome Home” from Hillsong Church, but we didn’t just borrow the phrase because they are a megachurch and because it was the trendy church thing to do. “Welcome Home” speaks of belonging; to a church family, to friends, and to God. It’s just another element that supports our focus on community. We want every person who comes through our doors to feel the sense of “coming home.” You might have also noticed that the imagery on the front page uses scenes of our church life, our buildings, and a lovely drone shot of the CMHR. We want to engage our viewers in feeling a connection with our church, our community, and our city. Everything on our website is intentional and directed towards newcomers or people who aren’t yet actively engaged.

I’m very excited about this important tool used in the life of our church and how much more we can reach out to others!

-JR, Graphic Designer

Some important things to note:
  • You can find all our past sermons at
  • Talk It Over (Our weekly message-aligned Bible study for small groups) can be found at
  • If you need to contact a staff member directly, find their info here
  • Our website is fully responsive on desktop and mobile devices. (Try resizing your browser window and see for yourself!)
  If you encounter any problems or want to know more about the development process, or you simply want to give us a friendly pat on the back, comment below or send an email to