site is a part-time work of Earle West of Marlboro, NJ USA
and many others. The goal is to facilitate efficient global
access to Christian truth and peace. I can be reached at (908) 216-5054 in the US.
In the fall
of 2000 a significant amount of US directory data was seeded
in into the project by Dennis
Kelly, Searcy, AR, USA. Eighteen months later, non-US
data was provided by Mac
Lynn, Nashville, TN, USA.
In 2002, Salvador
Cariga, The Philippines, Roy
Davison, Alken, Belgium, Randy
Matheny, Sao Jose dos Campos, Brazil, Theodore
Lucas, India, Graham
Fisher, the United Kingdom, Kim Voraritskul, Thailand,
and Fielden Allison, Kenya provided guidance and/or data for the project.
In 2003, an
(unamed-by-request) team of people have provided a
very large database (20,000 records, since reduced to 16,000)
of churches of Christ in India. In early 2004, Wendell
Broom provided to us a copy of his nearly 4,000 (since
reduced to 3,600) churches of Christ in Nigeria in 2004. During
their May, 2004 visit to the US, Lendal
and Peggy Wilks brought over their list of 107 churches
in Mozambique and more than 1,700 churches in Malawi.
In July, 2008, Bren White provided
a list of 319 French-speaking Churches of Christ around the world, which is the work of Barry Baggott, Doyle Key, and Bren.
In February, 2010, Ruth Zimmerman, Ontario, Canada, provided detailed records for 175 congregations in Papua New Guinea.
records, from every source, are generally vetted and matched
to our global database of latitude and longitudes for the
nearest poplulated place, based on a US government gazetteer.
Thanks to Matt Prewett
of the Saturn Road church of Christ in Garland, TX for providing
funds for providing county-level data for the entire US and
all of the Canadian postal codes.
Ben West did the Google Map integration during November, 2005, and Earle runs the text search functions.
States government has also provided a significant amount of
free geographic data that is needed to provide the unique
"find-within-radius" feature of the site worldwide.
The data these
folks provided is protected under United States copyright
law, and is used here by permission.
Web, Inc., a privately held for-profit corporation, owns
all of the software, data, presentation, intellectual property,
and patents pending that are embodied in the system at this
time. Copyright protections are asserted to prevent economic
and/or other forms of abuse. The same underlying software
system is currently used for commercial purposes for SkiWhere.com.
this site would have very limited value if it were not for
people like you, who silently provide an incredible non-stop
stream of updates for everyone to share. Please check out
all the listings you know about. Click
here to update a listing right now!
We openly list
all other known similar directories and occasionally use them
to verify new or changed listings, and to harvest new listings
from people who post to those sites. If you know of other
relevant directories, please write.
Check our list of other directories.
The good news
is that hundreds of thousands of seekers
are served with information about the congregation nearest
is a ministry, not a business.
We do have a limited amount of commercial
advertising on the site to cover hosting expenses.
goal is to make it easy to find the church of Christ wherever
someone might want to find one. By offering up each congregation's
own local web site, we encourage further inquiry into each
congregation's practices. Click
here to see the exciting traffic reports.
Of course practices
vary widely among churches, and people want to find churches having
practices they can enjoin.
in ChurchZip are limited to those disclosing certain highly distinctive
New Testament practices. We list only those churches satisfying all three:
1) those not served by any official denominational directory, 2) those
adhering to names for themselves that can be found in the New Testament,
and 3) those who adhere to the profoundly distinctive New Testament
practice of using acappella music during worship services.
We rely on leaders
within each congregation to tell us whether or not they fit these
characteristics. We ask no questions about what anyone
'believes,' but we do ask about what is practiced. We also
don't consider "theatrical" events of any kind to be defined as a worship service.
Why do we limit
this list? Very simple! Most people using ChurchZip are looking
for churches just such as these!
Please write if
you know of any listing incorrectly identified in this category.
We can probably point you to other directories, should this one
fail to meet your needs.
We browse all possible sources on the Internet and elsewhere to check for accuracy and changes.
Trustworthy directory operators are always willing to make corrections and/or additions
you provide to them.
Don't EVER pay someone to correct their own records. We welcome your corrections
and/or new records. Freely we receive, freely we give.
We are always looking
for contributions of data describing churches around the world.
If you have directory information we don't have, or have updates,
join the effort!
ChurchZip is a very
special kind of directory. Once you specify a particular place for
the center of your search, our radius-based listing crosses boundaries
of all types, including all local, state, and national borders.
The results are listed in an order based on distance (as the dove
In addition to zipcode-based
and place-name-based searches most people use, we also have a Global
Positioning System (GPS-satellite) based method of searching and
inserting new church records. This is intended to support churches
in developing nations having no classical street address. In an
effort to improve support for such locations, we are also giving
selected travelling missionaries hand-held GPS units for the purposes
of harvesting church location and census information. Please write
if you are interested in working with us in this exciting project.
ChurchZip is built on a very sophisticated professional database system
containing millions of placenames, and detailed records
for more than 40,000 churches.
For US placenames, we use the incredibly detailed United States Census TIGER database and an open-source
geocoder. For NON-US placenames, we use the US NIMA database of global placenames and regularly supplement that
data with Wikipedia details on state capitals around the world.
Because ChurchZip costs are so low, there are
no costs to any users, and spare capacity to serve 10 times the data we have now.
Now in it's eighth
year of operation, the ChurchZip system is one-of-a-kind software
application that uses numerous open-source (free) software and data
components. The application software is about 5,000 lines of custom
code. We use the Red Hat distribution of Linux, the Apache web server,
the PHP web application server, and mySQL database server. We use
AWStats for statistical analysis of usage.
We use the United
States National Imagery and Mapping Agency (NIMA) data for latitude
and longitude of non-US locations and the United States Geological
Survey (USGS) data for US locations. We rely almost exclusively
on NIMA's public repository of non-US place-names (and spellings)
approved by the Foreign Names Committee (FNC) of the United States
Board on Geographic Names. (We know they have erred in numerous
Latin renderings of Japanese and Chinese place names, and will continue
to report specific problems to them as needed).
An August, 1984 article
in "Sky and Telescope" written by United States National
Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) researcher, R.W. Sinnot
entitled "Astronomical Computing -- Virtues of the Haversine"
is the basis for our method of calculating global distances.
We are actively looking
to add data for postal codes in countries other than the US, and
are trying to find more comprehensive Gazetteer sources for non-US
cities and town data. Additional useful data is available, but there
are roughly 267 countries and all countries, except the US want
to charge big bucks for it. On the back-burner is the multi-language
display of data, including character sets other than our familiar
Latin (ASCII) character set. We've also thought about adding a feature
that would allow any registered user to comment on churches in the
database. We've since abandoned that notion.
also the center of several exciting trials of "Web Services"
technology. We've defined a SOAP WSDL
for other computers to directly access to the same church data you
see on the web site. General information on how to use it is here.
We've also exposed our global Gazetteer database as a web service
and it is actively used by a sister site SkiWhere.com
to find nearby ski resorts, worldwide. The WSDL
for that service is defined and general information is available
If you have other ideas, feel free to share them with us.
Since March, 2003,
ChurchZip is available on WAP-enabled cellphones! Very cool. Some
cellular carriers charge extra for web access, but there are free
methods documented here.
Our latest really cool thing
is integration with Google Earth in September, 2005.
Get Google Earth and
see church landmarks nicely overlaid on top
of excellent maps and awesome photos of the earth's surface -- everywhere on earth!
One word of caution: don't use this as your ONLY means of finding your way
to an unfamiliar place. Google does have somethings wrong...they have
my home address on my neighbor's house!
Our basic goal for
ChurchZip.com is to serve up free data from the world's largest
and most accurate directory of churches of Christ.