Tuesday, May 11, 2004

Church of Fools 

I'm very amused by the idea of an online church. The first two were launched today, and the Church of England has also appointed its first virtual pastor (there must be a blog title in that). In one way it's quite a good idea - it may appeal to people who are housebound, those in countries unsupportive of Christianity and to those who simply think their local vicar's a bastard.

But I think there'll be a big problem to overcome, which is just that it's such an obvious target for jokes - 'CofE goes cyber' headlines, and 'now they won't see if you fall asleep during the sermon' etc. More seriously, maybe one can find communion with others online as much as in real life, but something which increasing levels of depression and isolation in young people suggests is that such contact isn't a very good replacement for physical meeting. Maybe I'm just being reactionary and it's all a wonderful idea, but it does seem a little odd.

Odder still, though, is the Methodist version, which has gone a step further and created online 3D representations of its services. I vote to be the guy in the 666 sports shirt in this picture.

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