Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Is Church Possible in Second Life?

This is a question that I have been engaging with recently.  The question has popped up on several blogs where I have been able to engage in some discussion in the comments sections, with opinions ranging from it is not possible and is a mockery of church to yes it is possible to be church in virtual worlds including Second Life.  A more recent discussion about the possibility of celebrating the Eucharist in virtual settings has popped up on the Ship of Fools website.  (Links below).

So my question to you is, is church possible in Second Life?  Based on my four years of experience in Second Life and the past two years leading the community at St Matthew's, my answer is yes.  What is your take on this? 

Following on this question, what are your thoughts about the feasibility and the desirability of celebrating sacraments in Second Life?  My position is that if we are going to be church in Second Life, that we need to explore this.  It may not be possible, but I feel that we need to at least explore the possibilities.  I will note that I am not a priest in Real Life, so even if we figure out how to celebrate the sacraments in Second Life, I will not be the one to lead the celebration. 

So, the floor is open.  Is it possible to be church in Second Life?  What are the essentials of church, and can we do that in Second Life?  What is the role of the sacraments in the church, and what are your thoughts on how we might be able to celebrate them in Second Life?  Is it even possible to do so?


Links to where else this discussion is happening: