Today I listened to my former professor, Doug Estes, discuss the virtual church on the Paul Edwards Show (listen here). Formerly, I have considered virtual church to be a possible supplement to what Doug calls the “brick-and-morter” church, but I found this interview very convincing that church in a virtual world (or through means of the virtual world) can be as legitmatly church as anything with which we are familiar.
Have you thought much about virtual ecclesiology? If so, do you have any thoughts on the matter?
If not, I recommend visiting the website of Doug’s book where you can find a list of virtual churches to visit as well as a wealth of additional information on the subject. That can be accessed here.
I’m open to it but I think it will only really catch on with those who’ve grown up with social networking and have never been without it. I think it will also catch on with introverts and those who have had bad experiences with church. I think traditional churches should seek to add more of an online presence beyond just a website, even adding “exclusive content” for the web like bible studies and discussions.
Those points are all well taken. I think part of what Doug emphasized is that we have no idea what the internet will look like in 2019. In 2009 it looks nothing like it did in 1999. So as these new cyber-churches develop along with the web it will be really, really interesting to see what it looks like ten years from now.
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