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Jesus has a Homepage

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Jesus has a Homepage
He has a Web site, "The Jesus Homepage!" which is introduced with a Melvillean flourish worthy of Moby-Dick. "My name is Jesus Christ. Welcome to My homepage. In my 9-to-5 job, I work as the messiah for a major world religion.... However, when I'm not at work I like to 'surf the Net.'" The site offers "personal stuff," like a links page, which is a "roadmap" to Jesus-related attractions on the Web such as "Jesus vs. Elvis" and "Jesus vs. Win[dows] 95." There's a wondrous photo album: "Yes it's a 'baby picture' of Me. That's my Mom and stepfather. (Hi Mom!) ... Here I am heading to Golgotha. Needless to say I was not in a very good mood when this one was taken." A bio page lists Jesus' hobbies - carpentry, fishing, catering for weddings; you can visit his friends, the Pope and Billy Graham; and there are other related links: the Dead Sea Scrolls, the Shroud of Turin, a Dilbert page ("Everybody's gotta have Dilbert, right?"). Appropriately, there's an interactive membership feature: "Yes, I would like to accept Jesus Christ as my personal savior. Sign me up!" or "No, I do not want to accept Jesus Christ as my personal savior at this time." The membership boxes conveniently adjoin an "Online Baptism" location, which makes ritual simple: "A glass of water, a PPP connection, and your own head are all you'll need. It's quick and easy! (Remember - no water on the keyboard!)" That the site is wonderfully funny is almost beside the point. There are few other media where this could exist in so candid a form. It's impossible to browse it without remembering that through almost all of human history, publication of something like this would - and did - mean the author's decapitation, loss of entrails and fingers or, if he or she were lucky, a quick trip to the stake. If those martyrs of free thought are hovering somewhere up there in cyberspace, they will surely smile down on The Jesus Homepage! and perhaps take a bit of comfort from it. The page's mix of graphics, links, self-mockery, and humor is nearly flawlessly executed. The creator goes by the name Solomon Tunt. Even on the Web, free speech is bounded by convention in America. "I wouldn't feel safe using my real name, considering some of the nasty email I've received," he says. The site went up in February, and has received more than 6,000 visits, according to the spiritual visitor counter on display. The site works on many levels. It reminds us that in most media, approaching a subject like this with irreverence or satire is beyond conception. Reporters who would bellow impertinent questions at the president wouldn't dare do anything like this. The Jesus Homepage is neither timid nor overdone. It's funny without being offensive; good-humored, but not pointlessly blasphemous. It makes the reader think about religion, dogma, art, ritual, history, and imagery. It takes nothing away from worship, nor from Jesus Christ; in fact, it makes both Christ and worship more approachable, less forbidding. The imagining of Jesus on the Web is a great creative stroke, the Web's own equivalent of spirituality. Reactions, displayed in "The Jesus Mailbag," vary widely, from the delighted and bemused ("humorous ... blasphemous but humorous") to the bursting of digital blood vessels. Web pilgrims, journey there and bow your heads. Sign up if the Spirit moves you.
Jesus' Homepage ----- End NetScrap(TM) -----
Entered on: 06/06/1998
Send it: Allegedly perpetrated by:
Copy and paste this into an email to a friend. We can make it easy for you. Mail it off with the Netscrap(TM) MailTool. A little digging found this... A Link to Jesus Media Rant by Jon Katz St. Mediaville, 13 May http://www.hotwired.com/netizen/96/20/katz1a.html

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