Before I start, however, I feel the need to establish that I don't mean to be overly critical here, but I also don't think my job as a theologian is necessarily to congratulate the church for how well its doing all the time but to challenge it in light of the gospel of Jesus Christ.
That being said, I'll start with a positive: for most churches I know, their website is probably the worst thing about them. That really is a positive. It means that what is actually going on among the people as they fellowship and learn together through the Holy Spirit is most likely far more biblical, healthy, and Christian than their websites might lead one to believe. So many church web sites, especially those of churches in Santa Cruz and other coastal towns, are so desperate to appear relevant, hip, and life changing that I have a difficult time taking them seriously. I'll talk more about this under specific topics as this series progresses, but at this point I want to re-emphasize that I think the shallow spirituality exhibited on so many of these web sites is not fully indicative of the level of understanding, commitment, fellowship, and practical living of the Christian faith at most of the churches these web sites represent. This comes from much experience at my own church, which I think has an amazing vitality and commitment to the gospel despite its blind spots, which are serious and fairly openly exposed on its web site, but also from interaction with several pastors and friends in other churches. As this series progresses I will take aim and challenge the way these churches represent themselves (without naming any names of course) on their web sites, and I do believe these representations tell us something at least about the thinking, strategy, and values of these churches, but ultimately it is the Spirit that is giving life to our Christian communities, not our thinking, strategies, or values. Therefore, we ought to have a freedom to challenge the thinking, strategies and values thrown up on these web sites without fearing that we are in any way impugning the spiritual vitality, Christian commitment or orthodoxy of the churches.
These thoughts are works in progress so please feel free to offer your own input.