Christian Community and Online @JeremyHoover #wiredchurch #smchurch


Here is a twitter stream that started between JeremyHoover and myself re: the book The Church of Facebook

It is sometimes hard to get the stream just right,  inorder,  but here’s what we said on twitter:

  • RT @jeremyhoover: @d_rjoseph finished Church of Facebook book. Thumbs down. // Me: Why ? Elaborate plz #wiredchurch #smchurch about 1 hour ago from TweetDeck
  • @dlature It wasn’t about how to be the church on FB, which the sub/title implied. Didn’t feel the author spoke out of experience. about 1 hour ago from Seesmic in reply to dlature
  • @JeremyHoover What he DID cover imo was 1 of many ways (authenticity). While there is clearly much more 2 b said, major focus was valid about 1 hour ago from TweetDeck in reply to JeremyHoover
  • @dlature I didn’t get that. Authenticity was a last resort, almost like, If you MUST use FB, please be authentic. about 1 hour ago from Seesmic in reply to dlature
  • @JeremyHoover after all, it was just 200 pages;vols h/b written on socio/psych implications; church needs 2 consider theological issues about 1 hour ago from TweetDeck in reply to JeremyHoover
  • @dlature Agreed. imo, theology invalidates much of his socio/psych implications. about 1 hour ago from Seesmic in reply to dlature
  • @dlature Xn community is also objective. CoFB only dealt with the subjectivity of community, imo. 25 minutes ago from Seesmic in reply to dlature

  • @JeremyHoover “imo, theology invalidates much of his socio/psych implications.” // How so? 30 minutes ago from TweetDeck in reply to JeremyHoover

  • @dlature For example: Mt. 18:20. The church communicates Christ. That communication creates community. It happens on FB. 26 minutes ago from Seesmic in reply to dlature
  • @JeremyHoover “church comm’cates Christ. That comm creates community. It happens on FB.”// need much more elab ;skeptical on 1st imprsn 16 minutes ago from TweetDeck in reply to JeremyHoover
  • @JeremyHoover Chalk it up to 140 char limit….would like to create a blog post where we can explore this. Interested? 15 minutes ago from TweetDeck in reply to JeremyHoover
  • @dlature Yes. 2 minutes ago from Seesmic in reply to dlature
  • Now,  in the comments,  we continue and can clarify

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    About Theoblogical

    I am a Web developer with a background in theology, sociology and communications. I love to read, watch movies, sports, and am looking for authentic church.

    13 Replies to “Christian Community and Online @JeremyHoover #wiredchurch #smchurch”

    1. Theoblogical Post author

      I just realized that WordPress, somewhere along the way, introduced reply threads in comments. I don’t know how long that’s been the case, but my first reply (the one at 2:27pm today) actually belonged as a reply to your 2:04 comment. I saw this inmy second comment, noticing the indention beneath the comment. I take it you had no problems logging in with your twitter account? I just implemented that a few weeks ago. Hopefully your next comment won’t require moderation and go on in sinceI have approved at least one of your comments.

    2. Theoblogical Post author

      YOu said: “Almost like, If you *must* use FB, try to be as authentic as possible, but avoid it if you can.”

      I did not get that from the book at all.

      As for the 3 implications you listed, I did not sense that he considered these to be the best Facebook could do. On the contrary. He was simply pointing out the tendencies, and I agree that those are defeintely tendencies. In fact, I get downright irritated at all the silliness of the endless contests and games. I turned on an RSS feed from my blog to get my blogposts into Facebook.

      YOU said also: “But if we are already connected, and Christ is shared between us, either in person or on FB, biblical community is achieved. I think he misunderstood the theology.”

      I think that is a leap. Biblical community seems to me to be WAY more than verbal/textual communication. THere are ELEMENTS of community , and that in and of itself gives online community great value and importance in my book. But as a veteran of online community for twenty years now (pre-internet) , I have come to the conclusion that there is a lot lacking in the kind of community that is experienced online (and it IS certainly an experienceof great worth, and I consider myself an evangelist for the possibilities, and yet I agree with Jesse that most of the intentionality is missing. Not to say it CAN’T be implemented in some measure online…..but these to me are issues that point to how we shoudl be thinking theologically about what Biblical community is in an online context.

      1. Jeremy Hoover

        In his book, Jesse approached “intentionality” very subjectively. Who is the determiner of what is intentional or not? If I share a SocialInterview question with a teen from church and provide a silly answer, is that banal? Or might it be a way of connecting to that person in a way they identify with? A way of becoming, like Paul said, “all things to all people,” in order to reach people.

        I don’t think my sense that a sharing of Christ together, either on- or off-line is a leap. Christ is shared and communicated by his spirit, as well as verbally and textually.

        1. Theoblogical Post author

          Jeremy,

          See the interview with Jesse on United Methodist Reporter (http://umportal.org/article.asp?id=6187)

          Here he says more than once that he isn’t sayng “if you must be on FB” at all….he ‘s saying almost the oppostite: “It’s where people are”

          As for the “leap” , I think we have to be careful about proclaiming that “Biblical Community” being “achieved”. And I think that , in the end, the ftf has to be there. FB and other social media EXTEND upon what the ftf offers, and also extends the invitation to the ftf by way of making accessible the conversations that rae taking place (via Search and Tags, etc.) We can find conversations by searching using key words that we would otherwise miss. I think churches need to be cognizant of the taxonomy of theology; of helping the people aggregate the resources for community that are out there.

          I think you and I think alike on many issues (eg. your self id as “Progressive” tells me I am likely to agree with you on many things.

          Dale

      1. Jeremy Hoover

        Theologically, “community” is a function of fellowship. Fellowship is objective. We have fellowship with each other and other believers; it is shared between us because we are yoked together “in Christ.”

        His social and psychological implications were that FB 1)exposes our loneliness, 2)creates a condition for us to promote ourselves, and 3)undermines real community and connection by making us feel close to others even while subverting that and giving us a platform to perform on.

        Almost like, If you *must* use FB, try to be as authentic as possible, but avoid it if you can.

        But if we are already connected, and Christ is shared between us, either in person or on FB, biblical community is achieved. I think he misunderstood the theology.

    3. Theoblogical Post author

      Jeremy,

      I just instituted the Social Network login option, and so I am not sure how the regular WordPress approval option works….I can approve a comment once and then that account will be automatically allowed to comment without moderation/approval. We’ll see what happens after your first comment

      Dale

    4. Theoblogical Post author

      Jeremy, you “tweeted” : Xn community is also objective. CoFB only dealt with the subjectivity of community, imo.

      But I also feel he dealt with the responsibility that is upon us to “be a friend” and to hear the other person, if we want to be more than just the “Friend” as Facebook calls the long lists of people on our lists of hundreds, if not thousands. IOW, it’s not just “my feelings”, but stepping further in than the “typical” FB surfacy stuff. It is “to do” for us to be on a different level (even as one playfully participates in the “fun” stuff on FB.

      I appreciate the counseling perspective here, and the sense of call I felt Jesse sounding to take it to a level more in keeping with the humility and intimacy of Jesus with the woman at the well

      Dale

      1. Jeremy Hoover

        I guess I can see that. FB may not be the place for that humility and intimacy for some people. But some people can and will experience that. It’s kind of hard to take FB’s internal language of “friend” and apply it to a modern view of friendship. FB friendship is postmodern and virtual. Perhaps friendship is extending into new dimensions?

        1. Theoblogical Post author

          Good points, and something else I heard Jesse saying was that we need to keep an ideal/model of friendship before us and , in the “extension into new dimensions” you mention (and I think you are right here…there are new dimensions being added)……we have to be be on the watch for “flattening effects” that are inevitably introduced by the crowd.

          1. Jeremy Hoover

            Sure, and that’s a good point Jesse made. In a lot of ways, I wish his book had focused more on the points he brought out in the last chapter.

            An “ideal model” of friendship is not theological and may be open for theological critique. What, theologically, is a friend?

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