On the first day of Heather McIlwraith’s summer internship with Christian History Institute, we couldn’t help but notice her eyes light up when we mentioned the Torchlighters series–our flagship video line presenting Christian heroes to kids. As it turned out, Heather was already well-acquainted with them! She fondly remembered watching them as a child and also attending the premier of our second episode, “The John Bunyan Story” held in a Christian school here in Southeastern Pennsylvania. This was back in 2006, so you could say Heather is an original Torchlighter kid! Now Heather had the opportunity to offer her considerable artistic talents to help new children find the series that she herself had enjoyed.
Meanwhile, we at CHI knew Torchlighters.org needed a redesigned look. Though our previous site had served us well for nearly ten years, it was time for an update. What would best represent the high quality of the award-winning series so many had come to love? Heather put on her designing hat and shaped our new site to focus on the heroes themselves. She incorporated graphics that show the heroes in their historical settings, using art pulled directly from the animation. Our hope is for kids to begin relating to heroes like Corrie ten Boom, Jim Elliot, and John Wesley even before they’ve seen the videos.
We had Heather busy with all sorts of other intern tasks, but by the end of the summer the website design was complete. This is where her equally talented “little brother” came into play! Ian, a self-motivated entrepreneur, started his own business developing beautiful websites. He brought the vision to life, added fresh ideas of his own, and launched the new site in late December.
We are grateful to this faithful, talented, hard-working pair, and we pray that the new site will help the next generation become Torchlighters in their time!