Sean McConnell writes in Episcopal Life Online: They’re like monks of old, scribing texts on Scripture and theology, prayer and meditation, church governance and liturgics — topics that resonate with them and their experiences of faith in the current day.
They’re bloggers — writers of Internet weblogs (“blogs,” for short) — whose readers respond with comments for posting online. Episcopal Cafe lists bloggers at The Blogscape. Another listing of many of the Episcopal blogs are found at epiScope a news gathering blog edited by the Rev. Jan Nunley. executive editor of Episcopal Life Media
Together they populate the “blogosphere,” a communication environment that, spiritually speaking, includes content that comes as fresh air to some and rhetorical smog to others.
But an informal sampling of blogs shows that Episcopalians, for the most part, blog to build Christian community. Mainly, these blogs are virtual locations for gathering groups of people who love their church and express that love in diverse ways. A few writers may sow discord, yet most work to widen connections and collegiality that might otherwise remain untapped.
Regarding Episcopal Cafe – Sean writes:
A virtual newcomer, but already a frequently visited site, is Episcopal Café. (See article, above.) The Café is the brainchild of author and journalist Jim Naughton (The New York Times, Washington Post, Slate, ESPN), who is now canon for communication and advancement for the Diocese of Washington.
Episcopal Café is what some call a group blog, because it is managed by a fairly substantial and geographically far-flung group of writers, editors and news aggregators. One striking difference between the Café and other blogs is its requirement that people who post comments on articles use their full names. This is an attempt to keep the discourse civil and an air of accountability for comments made on the site, Naughton said.
“If people don’t want to put their names on a response, then I don’t want to read it,” he added.
On blogs that “allow anonymous comments — people can speak from the id without having to worry about being held accountable,” Naughton said when asked whether blogs had benefited discourse in the Episcopal Church.
“I don’t discount that this is sometimes liberating,” he said, “but if you can be anonymously vicious in a community of people who are anonymously vicious, then you have a sort of cyber-tribalism.”
Read it all here