"...really, really nice. Great job"
— Cam McVey What They Say


This guide covers features that are unique to Maranatha and not covered in the general guides.


See the Maranatha Homepage guide.

Content Notes


Maranatha features a single-column content area. The width and font size are carefully designed for optimal readability. Important elements like images, blockquotes and galleries extend outward for a dramatic effect (example). When a wider content area is desired, the Wide Content page template can be used. Certain pages use it automatically (such as the event calendar).


The clutter and mobile-unfriendliness of a sidebar is eliminated. Instead, an auto-generated section navigation appears below the header. This compact navigation replaces the most common sidebar widgets. When widgets are desired, they can be placed in the theme’s footer area.

Maranatha Archive Dropdown

Image Sizes

Most admin areas that accept an image upload show the size that the image will be cropped/resized to. For absolute control, you can manually resize your images before uploading.

300×50 is the maximum recommended size. Use a transparent PNG. The image is resized to 30 pixels in height when the “sticky bar” is present after scrolling.

The logo image is not resized upon uploading so it is important to resize it beforehand. You may want to read the HiDPI Logo instructions as well.


Images appearing in the header are 1600×400. The default header image is set in the Customizer. Each page or post can have its own image of the same size that will override the default. These images are also shown on lists of posts at one-half size.

Homepage Section

Homepage section (CT Section widget) images are cropped to 1680×1050. If you upload a larger image it will be resized and cropped. For the best result, precisely size your image before uploading and compress it to under 200 KB in file size (for faster loading).


The image set on a person is resized/cropped to 240×240.

Highlight Widget

The CT Highlight widget can be used in the footer widget area. It’s size is 768×512.


Gallery photos and photos embedded in content can be any size and the theme will show a resized version for more optimal viewing but the originals are stored on the server. Since digital camera photos can be several megabytes, you may want to resize photos to no more than 1024×1024 before uploading.


The following Translations are included in the theme’s languages folder. Translations for the Church Content plugin are listed on the plugin page.

Demo Media

The photos and videos used in the theme’s demo are not licensed for distribution and not included with the theme. You can obtain your own licenses if you are interested in using any them on your site. See our Stock Photo Recommendations for others.


Lightstock sells Christian-themed stock photography.




Unsplash photos are free to use.


Common Questions


Please see the Updates guide for instructions on how to update the theme.

2.6.1 (July 27, 2023)

Compatibility Update: This version improves compatibility with WordPress versions 6.0 – 6.3 as well as Google Maps and resolves a number of minor bugs.

Blog Post: All Themes and Church Content Pro Updated

  • Update framework to 2.9.4 (also see 2.9.3 changes)
  • Improve: Use callback for Google Maps (compatibility)
  • FIX: Map marker placed incorrectly (framework, compatibility)
  • FIX: Update nag on themes screen too close to theme thumbnails (framework)
  • FIX: Block editor quotes sizing (WordPress compatibility)
  • FIX: Front end quote styling (WordPress compatibility)
  • FIX: Page break buttons cut off
  • FIX: Cover image having extra space at top and bottom (compatibility)
  • FIX: Table block heading border incorrect (compatibility)

2.6 (January 28, 2022)

Compatibility Update: This version updates block styles to accommodate changes in WordPress 5.9.

Blog Post: Theme Updates for WordPress 5.9

  • Update framework to 2.9.2
  • FIX: Potential PHP notice for width/height of logo when logo dimensions cannot be determined
  • FIX: Harmless PHP warning after updating theme (effective next update)
  • FIX: Restore editor body font size after WordPress 5.9 changes
  • FIX: Restore styling for block editor title after WordPress 5.9 changes to markup
  • FIX: Restore editor heading font sizes after WordPress 5.9 changes
  • FIX: Incorrect font/size in Classic Block
  • FIX: Missing left margin on paragraph block with background
  • FIX: Gallery image captions in editor not white, after WordPress 5.9
  • FIX: Gallery images in editor not having rounded bottoms, after WordPress 5.9
  • FIX: Gallery image styling incorrect on frontend after WordPress 5.9
  • FIX: Gallery image on frontend not apply complete styles when has caption, after WordPress 5.9
  • IMPROVE: Automatically use https URL for saved logo URL after site switches from http to https
  • IMPROVE: Adjust sized text to bring editor and frontend in tandem
  • IMPROVE: Make captions in editor appear more similar to frontend

2.5 (September 16, 2021)

Compatibility Update: This version improves compatibility with WordPress 5.8 and PHP 8.

Blog Post: All-around Improvements

Note: Version 2.5.1 was released the same day to remove an unnecessary file.

  • Update framework to 2.9
  • FIX: Vimeo videos mis-sized on LearnDash pages
  • FIX: Spotify embeds too tall
  • FIX: preg_match regex error on embeds with PHP 8
  • FIX: Make $id_base in CTFW_Widget constructor not optional
  • FIX: PHP notice, “Undefined variable: poster_url”
  • FIX: Button missing on Jetpack contact form (thanks to Clay Porr for the fix)
  • FIX: Some blockquote citation backgrounds yellow
  • FIX: Contact Form 7 submission processing indicator misaligned
  • FIX: Tag block not wide on frontend when set to wide/full in editor
  • FIX: Search button styling broken in WordPress 5.9
  • FIX: File block inline embed of PDF showing on top of content that precedes it in WordPress 5.8
  • FIX: RSS block author lacks top margin in editor with WordPress 5.8
  • FIX: Archives block in editor has list font size too big with WordPress 5.8
  • FIX: Separator block styling broken on WordPress 5.8
  • FIX: File block filename styling broken in WordPress 5.8
  • FIX: Paragraph block font sizes for WordPress 5.8
  • FIX: Adjust position of blockquote citation for WordPress 5.8
  • IMPROVE: Column blocks on mobile
  • IMPROVE: Update framework to 2.9
  • IMPROVE: Line height for latest posts block in editor
  • IMPROVE: Reduce Large font size to fit more evenly between Medium and Huge sizes
  • IMPROVE: Make Medium font size larger to help differentiate from Normal/Default
  • IMPROVE: Update language files
  • NEW: Link phone numbers
  • NEW: Style new Page List block (WordPress 5.8)

2.4 (March 3, 2021)

Compatibility Update: This version accommodates two changes with blocks in WordPress 5.7.

Blog Post: Updates for WordPress 5.7, Better Accessibility, Bug Fixes and Easier HTTPS

  • Update framework to 2.8.1
  • FIX: Third-party block not showing when no other content on page
  • FIX: Admin area warning notice styling
  • FIX: sermon.net full embed was cut off
  • IMPROVE: Make full height cover block compatible with WordPress 5.7
  • IMPROVE: Remove extra height from social icon blocks with WordPress 5.7
  • IMPROVE: Add title attributes to search buttons for accessibility
  • IMPROVE: Add label to search input for accessibility
  • IMPROVE: Update translations

2.3 (December 9, 2020)

Compatibility Update: This release involves changes related to the version of jQuery used in WordPress 5.6.

Blog Post: All Themes and Plugins Updated for WordPress 5.6

  • IMPROVE: Update framework to 2.8
  • IMPROVE: Update CT Meta Box to 2.2.4
  • IMPROVE: Update jQuery Validate to 1.19.2
  • IMPROVE: Update jQuery Smooth Scroll to 2.2.0
  • IMPROVE: Replace jQuery deprecated jQuery methods (WordPress 5.6 compatibility)
  • IMPROVE: Adjust font sizing in blocks for consistency in WP 5.6
  • IMPROVE: Opt out of block-based widget editor (future WordPress compatibility)
  • FIX: Make mobile menu compatible with newer jQuery (WordPress 5.6 compatibility)
  • FIX: Widget block alignment in editor (WordPress 5.6 compatibility)
  • FIX: Separator blocks on frontend (WordPress 5.6 compatibility)
  • FIX: Sermon video embed not responsive when adding a second video to content of post

2.2 (August 11, 2020)

Compatibility Update: This release maintains compatibility with WordPress 5.5 (block editor styling) and newer versions of iOS on iPad and iPhone (menu dropdowns).

Blog Post: Theme Updates for WordPress 5.5 and Bug Fixes

  • Update framework to 2.7
  • NEW: Make video upload for sermon use media’s feature image for poster
  • IMPROVE: Style block editor title for WP 5.5
  • IMPROVE: Preserve wide blocks in editor for WP 5.5
  • IMPROVE: Update styling of widget blocks (categories, feed, recent posts, comments, calendar, tags, etc.) for WP 5.5
  • IMPROVE: Adjust audio block alignment in editor for WP 5.5
  • IMPROVE: Adjust editor width for WP 5.5, to match frontend
  • IMPROVE: Adjust verse block alignment in editor for WP 5.5
  • IMPROVE: Fix code block font size for WP 5.5
  • IMPROVE: Restore drop cap styling in block editor for WP 5.5 by removing .wp-block-paragraph
  • IMPROVE: Adjust image, gallery, cover and other block styling in editor for WP 5.5 (replace .block-editor-block-list__block with .wp-block)
  • IMPROVE: Add rel=”noopener noreferrer” to links with target=”_blank” for better security
  • IMPROVE: sermons.net embeds
  • FIX: Limit custom ordering note to people groups, event categories, sermon speakers and post categories to avoid confusion
  • FIX: Prevent potential issues with dropdown menu links failing on iOS devices

2.1 (April 1, 2020)

Compatibility Update: This release deals with a large number of WordPress 5.4 block styling changes.

Blog Post: Theme Updates for WordPress 5.4

  • Update framework to 2.6.6
  • Expand sermon.net detection (media center embeds)
  • Add consideration reusable blocks when showing content
  • Make verse block wrap
  • Adjust margins on widget blocks
  • Adjust font size in classic editor
  • Update calendar for WordPress 5.4 markup changes
  • Adjust frontend block styles for latest posts and RSS for WordPress 5.4
  • Adjust button and list font for WordPress 5.4
  • Update verse, preformatted and code block styles for WordPress 5.4
  • Adjust pullquote styles for WordPress 5.4
  • Adjust file block styling in editor for WordPress 5.4
  • Style quote blocks for WordPress 5.4
  • Adjust caption styling for WordPress 5.4
  • Update block editor link styling for WordPress 5.4
  • Adjust heading blocks in editor for WordPress 5.4
  • Correct block appender class for WordPress 5.4
  • Adjust block editor width for WordPress 5.4
  • Adjust body font size in block editor for WordPress 5.4
  • Make heading fonts in block editor compatible with WordPress 5.4

2.0.1 (December 16, 2019)

  • Enable Dropbox URL ?raw=1 for background video (Vide modification)
  • Make Dropbox URL ?raw=1 pass test in widget section
  • Fix CT Archive widget Type dropdown text so that it is translatable

2.0 (November 12, 2019)

Compatibility Update: This release maintains compatibility with WordPress 5.3’s block editor changes.

Blog Post: Theme Updates for WordPress 5.3 Compatibility

  • Update framework to 2.6.5 (includes changes in 2.6.4)
  • Adjust block editor title/content spacing for WordPress 5.3
  • Adjust editor heading font sizes for WP 5.3
  • Prevent button border radius from affecting editor
  • Force citation on blockquote to be left-aligned in WordPress 5.3
  • Make full width image blocks work in WordPress 5.3
  • Correct margin on Verse block in editor with WordPress 5.3
  • Make captions centered with WordPress 5.3
  • Update table block styles for WordPress 5.3
  • Make separator block match frontend after WordPress 5.3 changes (no color)
  • Adjust blockquote in block editor for WordPress 5.3
  • Make Dropbox URLs work with media players and download button (not podcasting)
  • Remove count on event dropdowns to avoid confusion with past events being included

1.9.1 (September 27, 2019)

Compatibility Update: This release relates to compatibility with WordPress’s block editor as well as third-party page builders.

Blog Post: It’s Our Birthday! Theme Updates, New Theme and WP Sermons

  • Update framework to 2.6.3
  • Output content when single audio or video block used
  • Output content when Elementor or Beaver Builder used on page
  • Add Spotify icon support
  • Add support for additional Google Play URL format
  • Show generic podcast icon for Castbox and LibSyn
  • Fix alignment of centered button block (last of multiple would align right)

1.9 (May 17, 2019)

Compatibility Update: This release maintains compatibility with WordPress 5.2.

Blog Post: Compatibility Updates for WordPress 5.2

  • Update framework to 2.6.2 (includes changes in 2.6.1)
  • Style new blocks in WordPress 5.2: Calendar, RSS, Tag Cloud, Search and Kindle
  • Make Kindle block responsive
  • Update styling for Cover block which in WordPress 5.2 allows blocks within
  • Update styling for quote block in WordPress 5.2
  • Adjust paragraph block styling, dropcaps and coloring for WordPress 5.2
  • Make Classic Block styling match frontend in WordPress 5.2
  • Update styling for various other blocks changed in WordPress 5.2
  • Adjust body and heading font sizes to match frontend in WordPress 5.2
  • Add support for wp_body_open() in WordPress 5.2

1.8 (March 12, 2019)

Compatibility Update: This release includes a change relating to PHP 7.3 compatibility. It improves styling for widgets added in WordPress 4.8 and prevents errors when using old versions of WordPress.

Blog Post: Spring Cleaning (Theme and Plugin Updates)

  • Update framework to 2.6
  • Enable mobile auto-linking phone numbers
  • Make images used in CT Section widget responsive (useful when adding a logo there)
  • Rely on download attribute only, instead of sending file contents with headers (less error prone, more secure)
  • Update Viewport Units buggyfill
  • Add support for WP Offload Media
  • Make core widgets show message when incompatible with widget area
  • Fix WP Audio / Video widget controls (WP 4.8+ compatibility)
  • Fix prev/next not considering time when multiple events on same day exist
  • Fix PHP warning when each() used in ctfw_background_image_preset_urls() (PHP 7.3 compatibility)
  • Fix newly added widget settings not taking effect until changed (force defaults)
  • Fix undefined function get_theme_file_uri() fatal error when using WordPress 4.6 or older with up-to-date theme
  • Fix widget save failing when relative URL used in field (automatically converted to absolute URL)
  • Fix fatal error on event recurrence grandfathering when ctc_get_theme_support() not available
  • Fix sermon books showing twice when starts with lowercase letter

1.7.2 (January 18, 2019)

This release further improves styling of WordPress blocks.

  • Improve table block styling
  • Improve file block styling
  • Make block gallery images have hover effect
  • Improve horizontal scroll prevention
  • Require WordPress 5.0 (new installs)

1.7.1 (January 9, 2019)

Compatibility Update: This release provides additional styling and support for WordPress 5.0 and its Gutenberg block editor.

Blog Post: Theme Updates for Improved Block Editor Experience

  • Update framework to 2.5
  • Make featured image size note show in block editor
  • Make block colors change properly in block editor and Customizer
  • Improve frontend blocks on mobile
  • Apply body color to all elements in classic block
  • Use add_theme_support( ‘responsive-embeds’ )
  • Style block gallery alignment
  • Style block button alignment
  • Adjust date on latest posts block
  • Style latest posts and categories blocks
  • Style block table options
  • Add padding to text with background
  • Center citation on large quote block with centered text
  • Make citation clickable on pullquote block
  • Fix rounded border size
  • Fix citation entry in block editor
  • Fix ‘Add Text’ problem when adding new button block
  • Improve drop cap sizing for small, large, etc.
  • Style Media & Text block
  • Make dropcap change color when change text color
  • Style comments block
  • Style file block

1.7 (December 5, 2018)

Compatibility Update: This release adds support for WordPress 5.0 and its new Gutenberg editor. Read Ready for WordPress 5.0’s “Gutenberg” Editor on our blog to learn how to prepare for Gutenberg.

  • Update framework to 2.4.8 (including changes in 2.4.7)
  • Add support for WordPress 5.0’s new “Gutenberg” editor (compatibility)
  • Make sermon.net embeds responsive
  • Fix undefined variable note on Media edit attachment

1.6.2 (October 11, 2018)

Blog Post: Theme and Plugin Maintenance Releases

  • Update framework to 2.4.6
  • Fix possibility of improper “Every Weeks” and “Every Months” wording in recurrence notes
  • Fix CT Events widget not respecting category selection
  • Avoid jQuery UI Datepicker conflicts

1.6.1 (October 5, 2018)

Also See: Church Content Pro Released, New Packages Available

  • Update framework to 2.4.5.
  • Fix buttons in Appearance > Widgets not working (rename admin-body.php back to admin-enqueue-scripts.php).
  • Prevent PHP undefined ‘notice’ variable on license expiration notice.

1.6 (October 1, 2018)

Compatibility Update: This release adds support for Church Content Pro and the beta version of WordPress’s new Gutenberg editor (Classic Editor still recommended for live sites until WordPress 5.0). It also addresses changes in WordPress 4.9.x.

Blog Post: Church Content Pro Released, New Packages Available

  • Update framework to 2.4.4 (including changes in 2.3, 2.4, 2.4.1, 2.4.2 and 2.4.3).
  • Add support for Church Content Pro add-on features.
  • Add experimental support for beta version of Gutenberg editor.
  • Make Ustream embeds responsive.
  • Make “Expiring Soon” license notice show 7 days prior to expiration (formerly 30 days).
  • Fix breadcrumbs conflict with Yoast Premium Prominent Words.
  • Prevent conflict with AppPresser relating to theme updates.
  • Grandfather basic recurrence for existing sites (Pro required for new sites).
  • Make wording for sermons, events, etc. use functions filtered by Pro settings.
  • Avoid various errors when Church Content plugin inactive.
  • Style comment cookie consent checkbox added in WordPress 4.9.6 (compatibility).
  • Adjust styling for updated media player in WordPress 4.9 (compatibility).
  • Add German and Norwegian translations; update language files.

1.5.2 (November 15, 2017)

Compatibility Update: This update maintains compatibility with WordPress 4.9 in multiple ways. It is recommended that all users update to keep the audio player appearing as intended and to prevent errors when switching themes.

Blog Post: Theme Updates for WordPress 4.9 Compatibility

  • Update framework to 2.2.2 (including changes in 2.2 and 2.2.1).
  • Adjust styling to accommodate WordPress 4.9’s updated audio/video player (compatibility).
  • Prevent errors when live previewing theme in Customizer and when switching themes (compatibility).
  • Update language files.

1.5.1 (October 3, 2017)

Compatibility Update: This update resolves a compatibility issue with the Safari browser.

Blog Post: Update to Fix Background Video in Safari 11

  • Fix: Safari 11 update broke background video (compatibility).

1.5 (September 12, 2017)

Compatibility Update: This update has changes addressing compatibility with newer versions of WordPress. Update both the theme and WordPress for the best experience.

Blog Post: Maintenance Updates for All Themes

  • Update framework to 2.1.1 (includes 2.0 and 2.1, which are more significant).
  • New: Prevent possibility of updating theme with another same-named theme from WordPress.org.
  • New: Support new ctfw-loop-after-content-used framework feature.
  • New: Add Romanian translation by Dan Beltechi.
  • New: Add Norwegian / Nynorsk (nn_NO) translation by Jostein Fauske.
  • Tweak: Update theme updater class from Easy Digital Downloads Software Licensing – now unmodified.
  • Tweak: Replace instances of “Church Theme Content” with “Church Content” – plugin renamed.
  • Tweak: Improve wording on update notice.
  • Tweak: Update Superfish from 1.7.6 to 1.7.9 (menu dropdowns).
  • Tweak: Move Additional CSS to bottom of Customizer.
  • Tweak: Strip tags on output of text logo in case switch from theme that allows HTML.
  • Fix: Make date ranges on event lists use abbreviations in same manner as single-day events.
  • Fix: Apply changes to reduce lines between gallery items at certain resolutions.
  • Fix: Showing section widget video field only on first section in Customizer with newer versions of WordPress (compatibility).
  • Fix: Stripping HTML in Logo Text in Customizer preview.
  • Fix: Prevent Edge browser interfering with phone styling.
  • Fix: Custom Menus widget styling was incorrect.
  • Fix: Disable ctfw-body-classes support; not used with this theme.

1.4 (November 7, 2016)

Blog Post: Video Background Added to Maranatha

  • Update framework to 1.9
  • Add support for video background in first CT Section widget on homepage
  • Change “Image Opacity” field to “Opacity” now that it applies to images and video
  • Sidestep issue with homepage scroll arrow being misaligned in Microsoft Edge browser
  • Update language files

1.3.1 (September 27, 2016)

  • Update framework to 1.8.6
  • Automatically set permalink structure to “Post name” when sample content imported (sample content uses this format)

1.3 (September 7, 2016)

Blog Post: New Features for All Themes

  • Update framework to 1.8.5 (includes changes in and 1.8.4)
  • Add “Register” button to event when new Registration URL field is used
  • Make soundfaith.com embeds responsive
  • Add Swedish translation by Robert Granat
  • Add Montserrat font to logo, menu, heading
  • Make ‘Expiring Soon’ admin notice a warning (orange) and not error (red)
  • Update admin notices to use new class names
  • Add Polylang support to CT Archives widget
  • Improve notice to install Church Content plugin (now goes to plugin search result)
  • Remove deprecated tags from style.css
  • Simplify email encoding description in meta boxes
  • Correct default map type override to ROADMAP (not ROAD)
  • Update language files (new strings to be translated)

1.2 (June 30, 2016)

Blog Post: Updates for Google Maps

  • Update framework to 1.8 (includes changes in 1.7.9)
    • Make Google Maps use API Key from Church Content plugin settings
    • Make post content with image or embed show when there is no text content
    • Resolve issue with sermon series index page not updating (transients issue)
    • Fix breadcrumb path which mistakenly included /blog/ in base URL for date archives
    • Update CT Meta Box to 2.0.1 (translation security)
  • Add support for new event Registration URL field in Church Content plugin (button will display in next version)
  • Make #hash in URL smoothscroll to anchor with offset for sticky menu
  • Fix issue with book index being cut off in Explorer / Edge when there is only one book
  • Fix issue with people group archive alignment (height)
  • Fix issue with search form in menu not working when icon clicked on mobile
  • Fix issue with position of checkbox and radio inputs

1.1 (May 17, 2016)

Blog Post: Maintenance Releases — Going 100% SSL

  • Update framework to 1.7.8 (includes changes in 1.7.6 and 1.7.7)
  • Change churchthemes.com URLs to https (including license status checks, updates and sample content imports)
  • Show admin bar in way that is compatible with sticky menu
  • Add support for plugin-provided shortcodes in CT Section widget
  • Add CSS to make pre tag wrap long text to next line
  • Remove erroneous ‘Download Video’ hover tooltip from sermon Save button
  • Make CT Categories dropdown work when Give plugin is installed
  • Avoid Theme Check iframe false positive on generic embed function
  • Fix incorrect textdomain
  • Update language files

1.0.5 (March 9, 2016)

  • Limit matchHeight on person short only to archive and page template (fixes error on search introduced in last update)

1.0.4 (March 8, 2016)

  • Make mail icon show for mailto and URLs with “newsletter” in URL (append ?newsletter to any URL)
  • Fix alignment on people archive when content height for each person varies
  • Fix meta widget so that its list content shows

1.0.3 (February 17, 2016)

  • Add French translation by Jean Berney
  • Make wide page templates have effect
  • Fix bug with calendar day table cell not aligning top when four or more events in other of same week
  • Reduce top margin on comment submit button when logged in

1.0.2 (December 11, 2015)

Compatibility Update: This update has changes relating to WordPress 4.4. Update both the theme and WordPress for the best experience. Also see 1.0.1 below.

Blog Post: Theme Updates for WordPress 4.4

  • Adjust comment submit button for new WordPress 4.4 field layout
  • Fix styling issue causing comments widget not to show comments
  • Prevent person’s name from linking to profile when there is no content

1.0.1 (December 9, 2015)

Compatibility Update: This update has changes relating to WordPress 4.4. Update both the theme and WordPress for the best experience.

  • Update framework to 1.7.5
  • Fix errors on sermon pages with WordPress 4.4
  • Fix error on Customizer when no pages have been created
  • Remove Locations link from breadcrumb when there is only one location

1.0 (November 30, 2015)

  • First release