Disclaimer: About This Blog

THIS BLOG IS: my personal journey of how I am rethinking some of my spiritual beliefs.
THIS BLOG IS NOT: intended to point fingers at people who I think are wrong.
I do not believe the final judgement will be based on how many correct answers we get on a theology exam. I believe many people throughout history have had genuine relationships with our Lord and Saviour Jesus, despite holding questionable beliefs and practices. I make no claim to having it all figured out or being your judge. If we end up disagreeing over these topics I pray we can find a way to demonstrate grace.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Web 2.0 and Church 2.0

We are about 10 years into interacting in a Web 2.0 world.  The legacy World Wide Web was made up of static webpages that were maintained by a small number of people.  Most webpages would have a single person assigned to update the content on a page.  When a visitor viewed a website there was not much opportunity for the user to interact with the content.  You could read it, print it, and click on links to jump to other pages, but you couldn't really contribute to the website in a meaningful way.

With Web 2.0 the internet changed.  Websites that allowed users to contribute content became very popular. The average person had platforms to share their voice.  Tools like MySpace, Facebook, Twitter, Wikipedia, Youtube, TripAdvisor, photo galleries, blogging... the list is endless.  Most of the popular websites today encourage participation and user contributed content. 

Can a parrallel be made with church?

With legacy or traditional church models, there is a small number of people that produce and deliver the content. There is often one man who has more voice than the rest.  The opportunity to interact with the message and contribute content is limited. A message is produced and delivered, and visitors (and regular attenders) for the most part simply take it in.

I believe there is a movement going on today where believers are seeking to have greater participation in gatherings of the church. 

Should we call this Church 2.0?

Although I love the idea. I actually don't think it would be accurate to call this movement Church 2.0.  Although the idea of open participation whenever the church gathers may seem foreign for many Christians, this is not a new movement at all. In the 16th century the Anabaptist movement promoted participation of the priesthood of believers. And I believe the movement can actually find its roots in the New Testament Church.  If we study all the one another passages, we see room for all believers participating in the most important aspects of church life.    We can also look at examples of teaching in the New Testament and note that most of it was done in interactive and participatory settings.

Simple open and participatory gatherings of the Church is not a new or dangerous concept. However what I can't find in my Bible is having someone called pastor preach a sermons every Sunday to a passive audience.

What do you think?  Do you think Web 2.0 has improved your web experience?  

Do you think greater levels of participation would benefit the church?

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