Tag Archives: Website

A Matter of Convention

As a bulletin editor, you visit Art & Media Portal on a regular basis for much of your content. To help make navigating Portal easier, here are a few tips to keep in mind:

1) Sunday Search: The Sunday Search is the first screen you see after you log in, and shows all the content specifically assigned for that Sunday, organized by media type:

Clip art (Father Flood, Scripture illustrations, word art, seasonal imagery, etc.)
Text-reflection (Cycles of Faith and Bright Ideas text files)
Scripture verse (Scripture verses formatted as text and tiff )
Text-Scripture readings (weekly chart of readings)
Children’s – Grades K-1 (Growing with the Gospel files)
Children’s – Grades 2-3 (Growing with the Gospel files)
Question & Answer (En Theos)
Non-LPi owned content (content from the USCCB, Catholic Relief Services, Parish Publishing, etc.)

Keep in mind that the amount of content available for a given week varies, so there may be more than one page of results; the top or bottom right of the screen will display whether there are additional pages.

2) Advanced Search: So you found the perfect cover for your bulletin, but Portal doesn’t know that your parish is partnering with a local senior center for an upcoming casino trip—an Advanced Search for keyword “casino” solves the problem. Or maybe the cover options for this week weren’t exactly what you were looking for—an Advanced Search for Media Type “Cover” and keyword “33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time” will show you past cover options LPi has offered (but don’t forget to check the “C” in the Liturgical Cycle box so that the cover art and Scripture match the readings for this year.

3) Lectionary Naming Convention: So what’s the random string of letters and numbers at the beginning of filenames? They’re actually not random, but part of a naming system for easier identification. For example,  an upcoming Sunday Search shows this file: C162ChKing_lg_sp_4c.tif. From the filename alone, one can see that this is a four-color tiff with Spanish text from the readings for Christ the King in Cycle C. As it turns out, it’s a beautiful bulletin cover:

So typing the Lectionary prefix C162 (Cycle C, Lectionary entry #162) in the Keyword field from any screen will bring up all results with C162 in the filename—a shortcut way of going to Advanced Search and searching for keyword “Our Lord Jesus Christ the King” with the Liturgical Cycle “C” box checked (and a convenient way to bring up just files related to the Scripture for a given week).

4) I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For: Finally, and most importantly, Art & Media Portal was created with you, the publication editor, in mind; we strive to provide content that is relevant to your community, and we are continually adding to our collection. We do our best to anticipate your needs when we prepare content, but the fact is, we rely on your suggestions and requests to improve our collection and to make sure we continue to meet your needs. So don’t be a stranger! Contact us here, or post a comment to this blog, and let us know what you want to see on Art & Media Portal!

Your Bulletin and Your Website

If you’re like most of our customers you print your bulletin weekly and use this bulletin to…

Screen shot 2009-12-17 at 8.17.24 PM

- communicate current, fresh content on happenings in your parish.
- provide an updated calendar of current events.
- publish accurate contact information for your staff and key volunteers.
- print a personal, timely message from your priest.
- display a few pictures of not just your church, but recent parish events.

Unfortunately, if you’re like over half of our customers, you don’t do the same on your website. Almost all of our customers have their own website, but well over half of those customers don’t publish content on their website at nearly the same frequency, depth or passion than they do their bulletin. If you’re like the majority of our customers, your website contains outdated information, broken links that go nowhere, and at least a few pages that say ‘Under Construction’ and probably said that same thing 6 months ago.Screen shot 2009-12-17 at 8.17.00 PM

The bulletin has been a staple of church communication for decades, but as the world seems to be moving online will it always be this way? Remember, the next generation of parishioners is growing up in online very connected world.

Here are a few simple things you can do now to help improve your online presence:

1. As the Bulletin Editor, you are aware of all the changes and upcoming events in your Parish. For every change you make in your bulletin or new article that is written, don’t forget about your website. You could serve as the focal point for communicating changes or new stories to whoever maintains your website.

2. If you don’t have a website yet, feel free to use ours. We offer a free directory service, www.seekandfind.com that can be used as a website. If you haven’t check this out yet, please go look for your parish, its there! If you need more, let us know. We have services that can assist.

3. Many of you have started to publish your bulletin online which is a great first step. In case you haven’t yet, you can find an electronic copy of your bulletin on our website, www.seekandfind.com. If you don’t want to manually upload your new bulletin to your website every week, you can have your bulletin appear on your website automatically through LPi’s Bulletin Widget. Call or email our Technical Support team for details.

Like the bulletin, the Internet is a communication vehicle. The technologies used to create a website or manage an email campaign may seem complicated maybe even a little scary, but in the end they are just tools. These tools can help you communicate your mission. Here at LPi, we’ll be rolling out some new technologies in 2010 to help improve your presence on the Internet and communicate more with your parishioners online if you wish to. We’ll be introducing a few of these in some upcoming blog posts over the next few months.