According to Inspire magazine St Stephen Walbrook is to become London’s ‘Internet Church’.
The Venerable Peter Delaney, Archdeacon of London commented: “Our vision is to create a truly virtual church that can be accessed through the internet, 24 hours a day, and will be able to offer sermons, services, prayer and Christian community to all visitors.”
The brainchild of Rev Dr Peter Elvy, St Stephen Walbrook will be officially launching the Internet Church this Christmas. “London’s Internet Church is believed to be the first of its kind in the capital. With support from both the Bishop of London and the Archdeacon of London, and a partnership with Christian media specialists, Premier.tv, we hope St Stephen Walbrook will flourish as London’s Internet Church.”
It doesn’t really specify what form this internet church will take beyond a series of programmes to be broadcast on Premier TV, the Christian radio television website. Neither the St Stephen Walbrook site not the Diocese of London site have any information at the time of writing as far as I can see.
Other internet church projects include the Oxford Diocese i-church and the Church of Fools / St Pixels from Ship of Fools. I’m not sure what happens at the i-church one as it seems to mainly happen in a ‘members area’. The Church of Fools went down the ‘simulated church’ route, whereas St Pixels has gone for worship in a chatroom-type ‘cafe’ along with bulletin boards. It remains to seen whether this latest project will be similar to these or go down a different route.
As an unrelated aside Inspire magazine will be giving away 10 of my books in the new year. Inspire is a free monthly magazine for churches or can be sent to individuals for a donation. It has a circulation of 65,000 and an estimated readership of 200,000 plus. CPO produce it in partnership with Church Army, Tearfund, CMS and Nationwide Christian Trust.