We’re back — have you missed us?
Hopefully most eNews subscribers have noticed they haven’t received an e-mail from us since June 26. But it definitely wasn’t because we were enjoying a long holiday.
Instead, our staff — especially New Media Coordinator Gina Capellazzi, Staff Photographer Jeff Witherow and I, along with diocesan webmaster Brendan Parker — has been working feverishly to accelerate launch of a long-planned website to replace the 2009 model that deteriorated rapidly this spring.
As eNews recipients surely noticed, attempting to read any of the last few issues was an exercise in frustration because the eNews relies heavily on our website. Amid chronic error messages and endlessly spinning wheels, it eventually made no sense to continue the eNews until we had a functioning website on which to base it.
The new site went live in the afternoon of Thursday, July 27. Rushing it to launch meant deferring a few features, especially those related to online purchasing, but we hope you’ll find the overall user experience significantly better than that of the old site, even back when it was working properly.
While reusing the old site’s color palette and header for the sake of continuity, we opened up the overall layout for a more expansive feel. Images are heavily emphasized throughout the site, but especially in the Photo & Video section where we drove poor Brendan crazy with requests for videos that play in place and photo galleries that occupy as much screen real estate as possible.
We flattened some of our sections to make navigation more straightforward, dramatically improved the search function (thanks, Brendan!) and created a section that consolidates all Customer Service functions in one spot.
We sincerely appreciate your patience throughout the eNews hiatus and the hasty Web transition. We hope recipients will once again find enjoyment in reading the eNews — and that others will sign up for it — as well as the new website. Please let us know what you think.