Virtual Devils Curse Internet Church – Follow Up

Original story – Glimpse inside the virtual church

Here’s what we’re talkin about! Crackers jumping into the fray! I didn’t even expend 1 calorie to figure out that this was going to happen. Honestly, I think it rocks! I wonder how long it will be before skins of monsters are praying along side mere mortals. Any H.P. Lovecraft fans testing the waters yet?

Though… Homer and his family should be able to go. Homer would of course have his walkman on listening to the game. Oh the reality of a virtual world. Happy glee.

Original Link

Virtual Devils Curse Internet Church
Wed May 19,10:05 AM ET
By Jason Hopps

LONDON (Reuters) – The world’s first Internet church has
fallen victim to a plague of virtual demons, some of whom have
been logging on as Satan and unleashing strings of expletives
during sermons.

The “Church of Fools” was launched last week as a unique
chance for Christians to worship interactively by choosing a
“3D” animated character who could kneel, sing hymns, talk to
others, hear a sermon, or shout “Hallelujah.”

The site attracts between 5,000 and 10,000 worshippers
daily and those who log on can also give money to a collection
plate via mobile phone.

But the temptation to misbehave has proved too much for
some.

“We have had problems from a small number of worshippers,
which happens in any Internet chat room, and we are bothered
about individual harassment, which we are taking seriously,” said the site’s
deputy editor, Stephen Goddard.

“We’re increasing security day by day to eliminate the
disruptive behavior, such as the profanity, but we’re
determined to carry on…At least we’re not preaching to the
converted,” he added.

The Church, sponsored by the Methodist Church but organized
by the multi-denominational “Ship of Fools” project, said it
had removed a “shout” function where people could speak to the
whole congregation. Some were using it to hurl abuse or yell:
“Satan loves you.”

The pulpit, altar and lectern areas will be closed to the
public after some worshippers walked their animated character
into those areas during sermons.

But the strongest measure against the unruly will be the
online equivalent of damnation: wardens will be able to smite
the wicked by instantly logging them out of the church if they
misbehave.

“In a way, we are facing the same problems faced by the
first preachers who met resistance when they moved into new
communities,” said Goddard.

“But the church has always expanded into new communities
and some of those are to be found in cyberspace now, so we are
determined to carry on.”

The Church of Fools is found at www.shipoffools.com.

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