I received a Facetime call today from the Doge of the Benedict Option, Marco Sermarini, who was excited about all the connections a bunch of us Ben Op types are making to each other, across national borders and even oceans. “We have to find some way to make this a real network,” he said.
I agree. In fact, I’ve exchanged a couple of e-mails with a reader who is a web designer, and who is interested in the project. We talked about things we would like to see on the site. Me, I don’t want it to be a money-making venture. I only want it to be a place where people interested in the Ben Op can find each other, and share ideas. Specifically, I would want the site to have at least the following features:
- A searchable database of Benedict Option groups around the world
- Pages where we can share ideas
- A calendar of upcoming Benedict Option events, by locality
- A page where we can post links to appropriate readings
Wouldn’t it be nice to know how to find other Ben Op folks when you travel? Where to go to worship in friendly churches in your denomination? How to find people in your own town or city who are interested in these ideas, and who want to start a school, or a reading group, or any other kind of association?
What other features would be helpful to you? We can’t have a comments section, I’m sorry to say. I would have to monitor it, and I am already far too busy with my day job. Ideally the site would have mirror versions in other languages — but managing those sites would have to be somebody else’s job.
The web designer told me that a ballpark figure for building a quality website would be between $5,000 and $8,000. I don’t have that kind of money, especially to build a website that will not be used to make me money. I won’t accept advertising on it, and I won’t sell people’s email addresses and contact information. Nor do I want people to use the site for marketing in any way. I wouldn’t mind paying the annual fee for a web host, and editing the site, but I can’t afford to build it.
Any of you have the skills and the desire to help?