Online Churches: Why they are Nothing New and Why they are Growing

by saintjad1022 on February 5, 2013

I went to visit my very elderly, housebound grandmother for the last time in late November of 1973, and I learned that she quietly attented church by herself each and every Sunday without leaving her house.

 

Grandma lived in a very rural community in Wisconsin. She had brittle bones and was almost blind, so she could no longer drive. Even if she could have managed the trip to her local church, the travel would have killed her. Instead, each Winter Sunday she sat down in a chair that looked out over her dormant flower garden and read her favorite passages out of her worn bible. She read the Lord’s Prayer and a few Psalms. I know this because I heard her reading aloud while snuggled in my makeshift bed in the living room before dawn. I wandered in. She pulled me into her lap, held my hand, and we read together while the snow flew outside.

 

Later, we watched a minister on her very snowy TV screen. Even in the midst of the usual bout of Wisconsin blizzards, this tough old farm widow found the fellowship she craved, and I, a little girl, found fellowship with her. Decades before home computers and the internet, Grandma found her church and was able to worship each week from home–and she enfolded me into that very special experience. Grandma and other worshippers are rolling their eyes in heaven right now: They understand that a a website for a church existed long before the internet. A website for church begins in the heart of each and every believer who longs to commune with others who share their faith, no matter where they are, or what they are going thorough.

 

Joining an actual congregation is never easy. A family forced to move due to the bad economy might find that the local churches are not a “good fit”. Perhaps the congregation is so large the new worshippers feel overwhelmed. Perhaps the family in question is coming from a church that expected a more formal or less strict dress code. They “style” might be different. In other words, it is always hard to be the new kid in town–even in church. Many of those people are looking for a website for a church that speaks to them.

 

A website for a church can help foster a sense of community, as long as new congregants can get the help and support they need. A website for church should include several options to serve the needs of these online congregants, such as a special online prayer forum, a ladies prayer circle, marriage counseling, and a forum that discusses the meaning of being a Christain family. As the economy grows tougher and tougher, any good website for a church should offer financial counseling services.

 

While the idea of creating a website for a church may seem crazy to some who are used to attending services in an actual physical location, good people are hungry for worship, just like my grandmother, so many years ago, who consulted her bible, watched TV, and held my hand.

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