Recently I was chatting with a few friends separately about Linux and using it in Churches. This got me thinking about what Churches might need, rather than about how to get Linux onto Church computers.
My friend Wesley and I were chatting about using the Dansguardian filtering software on a main firewall server at his Church's office. He initially wanted to install it on the desktop computers there, and then had the good idea to rather install it on a central server.
Earlier in the week, my friend Paul was wondering if his open source project for Church websites was possibly being rendered unnecessary by the plethora of excellent open source content management systems out there. Knowing that there's a gap when it comes to open source Church membership management systems, I suggested a new direction for his project.
Then just yesterday my friend Raphaël, the founder of the Ichthux project, was wondering if Ichthux was really necessary anymore. He said that in a way, trying to force people to use open source software was infringing on their freedom to choose what software they want to use.
The combination of these conversations made me wonder if perhaps there's a need for a Church server solution. One that acts as a firewall, a content filter, as well as a server for church membership management software, church service management software, and any other server-centered software that a Church might find useful. It could have a nice web interface to configure it and all the software installed on it.
What do you think? Do you think there's a "market" for a Linux server distribution for Churches, one that would be easy to install, setup and maintain?
Also, would you be interested in helping out with any of the above projects? I know both Ichthux and openchurch could do with folks to help out with development and other things.