Life Online - Communities

Not convinced about the Internet as a discipleship tool? Check out part two of our guide to the best Christian websites out there...

With so many Christian resources now available on the web it can be a hard job sorting the wheat from the chaff. That’s why here at Christianity we’ve gone out into the fields, scythes in hand, and brought back a bountiful harvest that will keep your bellies full for years to come. There are blogs, news, music, education, comedy, and even apps that you can put on your phone. So why not pop on the kettle, sit down at your computer and let the world come to you…

In recent years the speed and reliability of broadband has led to a change in the way people interact online. One excellent example of this is St Pixels, one of the world’s first online churches. Before you begin to worry, this isn’t some mysterious cult that’s popped up on the Internet offering salvation for $10 a month. Instead it’s a secure, intelligent, and genuinely loving environment where Christians can come from around the world to worship together. Meetings take place in a virtual church, akin to a chatroom, with someone leading the service and encouraging responses from the congregation. In many ways it shouldn’t work, but on my last visit I found the service both moving and edifying. Recently the church has set up a peer-to-peer discipleship section so members can keep themselves accountable to each other, something naysayers have often said is missing online.
If you’ve ever wanted to study theology at the prestigious Spurgeon’s College but don’t fancy quitting your day job or moving to southeast London then its new online college might be just the thing. From the comfort of your own armchair you can work your way towards a certificate, diploma, or even full degree. The courses are modular and have no set time limit so you can study at your own pace. Each student has a module tutor assigned to them to aid in their studies, and the courses are supplied online in a multi-media format. At the certificate level modules cost £100 each and there are nine compulsory and a choice of eight optional ones that you can mix and match to achieve the 120 credits that it takes to achieve the qualification. There’s also a sampler module if you just wish to dip your toe in.
Tired of mainstream music? Growing weary of the same artists being played on the radio all the time? Corneas still recovering from the visual assault of neon colours and badly arranged pages on MySpace? Then let your search for the next big thing guide you to Reverbnation. This site is home to thousands of independent, emerging artists from all around the world, which you can search for by genre or even location – allowing you to tap into the music scene in your area. The layout is clear and simple with each artist having their own page which can feature songs, videos, biographies, tour dates, and even press clippings. Contact details are available so you can book them or simply say hello. Of course if you have any songs of your own then you can sign up for a free account and get your music out into the world.


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