The Restful Theme is designed by ThemeBright.com (Twitter). It is their first WordPress theme for churches. It is uses ChurchThemes.com Church Content plugin and is very easy to use. We think the simple design would work for any type of church. If you want to learn more about this newer theme company and it’s vision, read our interview we did with Galen Gidman (Twitter).
Who This is For:
We think that the Restful Theme would be a great fit for beginner WordPress users because it has a number of important church features built into it. We think it’s simple design makes it very flexible so any church can use it to mimic their off line personality.
Price: You can purchase this theme and get a year support for $99. This is a solid value.
Social Media Built In: All the major social media channels are built into this theme. It is ver easy to add you church’s information by adding links in a section of the customization section.
Simple Design: I like the overall simple design of the theme. It makes it a great online canvas for all styles of churches.
Responsive Design: This theme looks great on all devices, which is really important today as more people are viewing sites vi a their phones and tablets.
Footer Design: Restful theme incorporates footers into their WordPress church theme design. I am a big fan of footers because you can use them to place important information like maps, directions and service times on the bottom of every page.
Sidebar Design: The Restful theme has a standard sidebar that you can use on every page. This is a nice feature. However, I wish they would give you more than one option for it so that you can highlight different function.
Built In Home Page Slider: The built in home page slider is pretty simple to set up. It only requires you to ad an image and automatically adjusts them to fit the space. You can type in title and text that will appear on top of the image.
Church Theme Content Plugin: The Restful Theme from ThemeBright utilizes ChurchThemes.com Church Theme Content Plugin. Once you install this plugin, you have a ton of important church features (events, sermons, staff, and more) built into your site. It also make podcasting a breeze. Read more about it here.
Documentation: The documentation ThemeBright has is really good. Their site contains simple step by step instructions. They cover most of the main topics new users would need help with (events, pages, etc.). I would like them to have a tutorial specifically on how to set up the home page. Advanced WordPress users can figure it out intuitively, but beginners would probably prefer some clear instructions for this important page since your content is populated from three different locations: the slider, widgets and page.
Limited Color Options: I also think it would be nice to have more color options built in via the customizer settings. They offer a light and dark background. Some churches might prefer to have more color schemes.
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Home Page Widgets: The home page is created via widgets and assigning a certain page as the static home page. This gives you a ton of different flexibility. I state this here because some themes have built in home pages with present components.
Column Page Layout Options: I like to create pages with multiple columns in the main page area. Unfortunately, the Exodus code does not have a plugin or short code to allow you to do this (like Elegant Themes or Genesis Framework). This is not an issue for 95% of the population because they can use the sidebars to create a similar feel. If you are an advanced user who likes the flexibility, you might miss it!