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GodBlogCon 2005

Kim

Boy do I wish I were at this rather than cooped up at home in rainy New England:

What would Jesus blog? That and other pressing questions drew 135 Christians to Southern California this weekend for a national conference billed as the first-ever for "God bloggers," a growing community of online writers who exchange information and analyze current events from a Christian perspective.

Sounds interesting, although I wonder if some attendees (or perhaps the writer of the article) may be inflating the importance of blogging in the scheme of Christian history:

Joe Carter, author of evangelicaloutpost.com., compared blogging to the 95 Theses posted by Martin Luther nearly 500 years ago that launched the Protestant Reformation.

"It's like putting 95 blogs out there," said Carter, who previously said God bloggers offer an "uncensored and unadulterated" view of contemporary Christian thought on politics and organized religion.

Hmmm...the 95 Theses you say?

Anyway, the article goes on to describe how blogging allows Christians to engage with each other and the broader culture in new ways:

Many bloggers are now writing about religious oppression, poverty and world hunger, instead of hot-button issues such as abortion, homosexuality and assisted suicide, said the Rev. Andrew Jackson, a seminary professor and pastor at the Word of Grace Church in Mesa, Ariz.

"With blogging you tend to break out of those circles and you see other points of view," Carter said. "There's a bigger world out there than gay marriage and abortion."

At one well-attended workshop — "When Non-Christians Read Your Blog" — Biola University professor Timothy Muehlhoff gave instructions on writing about faith without alienating nonbelievers.

He stressed that God blogging has the potential to be a "train wreck" because done wrong it can reinforce stereotypes of evangelical Christians as angry and close-minded "pit bulls of the culture wars."

"As Christians today we are embroiled in the argument culture and we have forgotten this one thing: 'Blessed are the peacemakers.'," he said. "Wouldn't it be nice if we could say we brought a level of civility back to the conversation?"

What do you think? What is the potential of God blogging? What kind of impact are Christians making on the blogosphere?

For more info, visit the GodBlogCon web site.

Topics: Online