Back in July I spoke at an ASCM conference on virtual church. We had a really good conversation about what virtual churches might look like, and some of the issues and challenges that surround them. The ASCM, at their meeting after the conference, put the challenge back to me to do it, and offered their support… they were backed up by Lisa Hall who keeps asking me what alternative worship would look like in her little part of the world right in the middle of australia … so we’re going to give it a go…
There are obviously many virtual churches that already exist. Not many of them have a flavour that ‘works’ in much of Australia (I know, we’re precious about stuff like that!)… and we also are committed to some pretty challenging principles: that this becomes a worshipping community that the people involved are accountable to, which expects transformation and involvement in a local community in areas of justice and discipleship, and that it has the same principles of participation and interaction that we take seriously in ‘real’ alternative worship – where worship is different because of each person who has been there.
One of the things that crossed my mind in a conversation about it this morning is that it might work if we go the monastic community line – a commitment to a rhythm of life, where the virtual community sustains us to live differently in our own contexts.
Anyone done it? What can you teach us?