Godinterest Offers ‘WordPress for Religion’
LONDON, April 7, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — Great Britain is not the place to find a bumper sticker that says, “Honk if you love Jesus.” Britons tend to be tolerant and respectful of Muslim and Hindu religious observances, but not their own. Godinterest Blogs, as the name implies, is designed with religion in mind. The site was developed by Dean Jones, a 36-year-old project manager and Saint Martins, university of the arts post graduate who said, “Godinterest.org gives occasion to a whole new set ofconversations about religion in public life that represents a tremendous opportunity for publication, discussion and critique of a kind never seen before.”
The growing influence of blogs is indisputable. Most would agree that the mainstream press is looking more like the blogosphere. Old newspapers and magazines now host blogs by reporters on their websites. Because of their ease of publication and use, blogs have changed the shape of public dialogue in society as a whole and now around religious questions in particular.
Jones said, “I get excited about the idea of blogs transforming religion and hope to encourage tolerance, remove ignorance, raise issues and create an arena in which views and practices are explored. Our ethos is to ‘Love people, Inspire minds, Teach hearts and Embrace life!'”
Godinterest.org offers a variety of themes, plug-ins for podcasts; video tutorials and easy blogging to help users get started.
Jones said, “Godinterest Bloggers can use their blogs as a learning journal to gather relevant information and ideas, and communicate with other people. Religious educators can use blogs to keep in contact with students’ parents and use blogs to record their own personal life, and express emotions or feelings. They can use our blogs as an instructional and assessment tool, and blogs can be used as a task management tool. Blogs can also be used to teach individuals about writing for an audience as they can be made public.”
Godinterest could offer the means for under-represented voices to find a public voice.
Jones said, “Godinterest represents the possibility of a common conversation among a diverse set of voices. A Godinterest blog supports religious education by encouraging reflection, questioning as well as collaboration and providing a context for engaging in higher-order thinking!”
With comparable features, WordPress for Religion by Godinterest could be just what we need, after all research has shown that religious beliefs and practices seem to make people happier, and in some situations healthier and better-off, too. But to argue that such benefits more than offset the gains from extra Religious Ed would require a leap of faith.