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Creating Church Online: A Case-Study Approach to Religious Experience

Creating Church Online: A Case-Study Approach to Religious Experience TIM HUTCHGS TRODUCTION Over the last three years the practice of onle churchgog has grown rapidly through the arrival of a number of large, well-financed projects supported by well-known real-world Christian groups. itial Christian responses to onle religion lacked systematic observational groundg and drew heavily on assumptions regardg the importance of face-to-face meetg, the nature of onle community, the efficacy of the ternet as a medium for proselytism and the effects of the ternet on authority and accountability. There is urgent need for new theological appraisals of these important issues, based on sound sociological understandg of the nature of onle behaviour and on detailed ethnography of specific onle groups, and my current research seeks to contribute to this project. this article, I will first outle the origs of the onle church. Second, I briefly describe some of the earliest Christian responses to the ternet. On these foundations, I then consider three case studies based on my own participant observation and terviewg conducted over the past two years. relation to these examples I conclude by discussg sacred space onle, particular, a sense of immersion sacred presence which onle churches have long sought to create. The ability of the ternet http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Studies in World Christianity Edinburgh University Press

Creating Church Online: A Case-Study Approach to Religious Experience

Studies in World Christianity , Volume 13 (3): 243 – Dec 1, 2007

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Publisher
Edinburgh University Press
Copyright
© Edinburgh University Press
ISSN
1354-9901
eISSN
1750-0230
DOI
10.3366/swc.2007.13.3.243
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

TIM HUTCHGS TRODUCTION Over the last three years the practice of onle churchgog has grown rapidly through the arrival of a number of large, well-financed projects supported by well-known real-world Christian groups. itial Christian responses to onle religion lacked systematic observational groundg and drew heavily on assumptions regardg the importance of face-to-face meetg, the nature of onle community, the efficacy of the ternet as a medium for proselytism and the effects of the ternet on authority and accountability. There is urgent need for new theological appraisals of these important issues, based on sound sociological understandg of the nature of onle behaviour and on detailed ethnography of specific onle groups, and my current research seeks to contribute to this project. this article, I will first outle the origs of the onle church. Second, I briefly describe some of the earliest Christian responses to the ternet. On these foundations, I then consider three case studies based on my own participant observation and terviewg conducted over the past two years. relation to these examples I conclude by discussg sacred space onle, particular, a sense of immersion sacred presence which onle churches have long sought to create. The ability of the ternet

Journal

Studies in World ChristianityEdinburgh University Press

Published: Dec 1, 2007

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