Online Church, virtual church, cyberchurch, or virtual church refer to an array of popular ways that Christian sects can use the Internet to facilitate all their religious functions, especially prayer, worship, and preaching. Earlier, I have said that this new age of Internet Ministries is the new church, which is the perfect vehicle for Christian sects to proclaim the gospel of our Saviour Jesus Christ to all the world. As this dawns the holy and divine message of our Lord Jesus Christ through the Internet, it is expected that His work will be universally manifested through all forms of communication. Our Lord’s unprecedented move is coming to man has been widely hailed as the perfect tool ever given by God to man. This is why many people now consider the Internet a divine tool to make holy Communion more accessible and easy.
But there are certain pros and cons of using an online community to communicate the Christian faith to all parts of the globe. For instance, the pros and cons of the online church are enumerated below:
There is no physical barrier between you and one another, unlike the synagogues and houses of worship before. Here, you don’t need to leave your house to go to one another’s home for praying, sharing the Word, or participating in communal activities. This is an advantage for the Christian churches worldwide, especially for those who are geographically isolated and don’t have access to the conventional church or temple. You can attend Bible studies online, share spiritual lessons, get acquainted with other believers, and participate actively in online forums and chats. Moreover, you can easily get updated with your community and country’s happenings, what new traditions are being followed, what programs are being conducted, etc. You can be genuinely and deeply connected to your community.
When everybody is busy and has a hard day ahead of him/her, the church provides an avenue for individuals to connect and talk about their problems, pray, share their joy, and gain encouragement and support from other believers. You don’t need to leave your home to join other communities; your online presence remains anonymous. Hence, people find it comforting to interact online with fellow Christians and share their problems and pleasures. They feel that they don’t violate anyone’s privacy and feel secured.
It’s relatively expensive to establish an online church presence. A brick and mortar church need to be maintained and opened continuously and at fixed locations. A church online needs to be promoted continually through article marketing, blogs, press release, social networking, donations, events, online conferences, etc. It requires a considerable budget to maintain a network of local churches.
If you are seriously considering having an online church presence in your locality, there are two available alternatives. First is to have your church established as an affiliate of a national church association like Catholic College pastor or Evangelist network. The second is to have a website of your own dedicated to your local church community. Having a personal website allows you to interact with others and promote your online church. This alternative is more time-consuming and will allow you to develop your brand and have a clear online presence with a local church in your area.