The National President of the Association of Nigeria Christian Authors and Publishers (ANCAPS), Mr. Wole Adedoyin on Sunday urged Nigerian pastors to embrace and develop interest in establishing online churches and using cybermision to win new souls to the body of Christ.
This submission was made yesterday after the monthly meeting of the association in Ibadan. According to Mr. Adedoyin, “In this present Information Communication and Technology age, if a church is not online, then it is not actually engaging the culture. A church needs to be where people gather and they are online and on social media. Social Media is a valid ministry of the church. Online community can enhance the physical community.
“A recent research found out that 72 percent of online adults use Social Media. Every age group continues to experience growth, particularly those over 65 who have tripled their usage in the last four years. From 13 percent in 2009 to 43 percent this year.”
Despite the overwhelming trends in social media usage, another research discovered that less than half of all churches are engaged on Facebook. A full 40 percent are not using any social networking tools
“As such people should be transitioned from an online community to a physical one whenever possible, without abandoning the online aspect. Some people can get to church because of illness. Someone may be in a country where the gospel is persecuted . Those and similar groups can continue to engage their church online. Those participants matter to God. They are real people.”
“Ideally, church will have an online presence, but will strongly encourage life-on-life interaction where social media enhances rather than excuses community.”
“This can be one more tool that we have to introduce people to Jesus Christ and its church. It is not going away anytime soon, so we cannot just ignore it. Instead, we need to learn how to use it for God’s glory. If not, we will become increasingly irrelevant in a world shaped by the internet.”