Coming Soon to Old First: The Online Social Hall

Coming Soon to Old First: The Online Social Hall

If you’ve been around churches for a while—whether Old First or pretty much any other American church—you probably remember church photo directories that were popular in the 1990s. A simple concept, really—in addition to providing addresses and phone numbers for all the members, photo directories also had a photo for each family in the congregation. In their heyday, they were an innovation that helped new folks acclimate to congregations by placing names with faces.

Old First’s most recent photo directory is from 2000; click on the photos to the right for a little trip down Memory Lane! That was the year that I joined Old First. I joined too late to be part of the directory myself, but I remember pouring over its pages to try to memorize faces and names.

We haven’t updated that photo directory in the ensuing decade. They’re expensive to produce and take a fair amount of organizing to take photos of all the families in the church. And in 2011—with the proliferation of Facebook, Flikr and other online social networking sites—a photo directory that sits on a shelf seems quaint at best.

Now we’re ready to enter this decade with a new online photo directory, called The Online Social Hall.

Watch for an invitation to join that will appear in your email in early December. We’re counting on YOU to help us by taking the time to:

  • Sign up for the site by creating a password;
  • Confirm your contact information;
  • Upload a photo.

It will take a few moments of your time, but compared to the old style photo directories it’s a cinch (and it’s free!). With everyone’s help, this new online photo directory will help everyone in our growing community get to know one another.

The Online Social Hall will also become the communication mechanism for the congregation and our ministries and fellowship groups. Each group will get a new electronic mailing list email address, replacing the current mailing lists. I’ll post more information about that in an upcoming article.

During the first three Sundays in December we’ll have some Old Firsters who are familiar with the system available during Fellowship Hour with computers to sign you up on the spot, in case you need a helping hand.

If you have questions, contact Suzanne Cole.