A virtual person, a.k.a. avatar. Behind an avatar, real people can do almost anything they want within the virtual world called Second Life. (WGM image)
Second Life is a life-like virtual community whose population is now nearly eight million. You can do almost anything on Second Life that you can in real life, including purchasing land, and many citizens behave as though they are without consequence. What the community is desperately in need of is the Gospel.
World Gospel Mission has created an evangelism handbook for Christians who are already members of Second Life. Hubert Herriman said the handbook is designed to help Christians "to be able to talk to another avatar in a very friendly way, bringing up the things of Christ, living out their life in that Second Life as a Christian."
The handbook is the Luke 10 model of how to share the Gospel. It teaches readers how to transform virtual relationships into real relationships.
WGM is not encouraging Christians to become members of Second Life but believes the virtual world is ready for the harvest just as the physical world. "We look at that world and say, ‘They need to be reached like anybody else in the world.' Behind the avatars that you find in Second Life, there are real people and we know that they need to hear the Gospel like anybody else does."
The project has come about within the last year and grown in just the last four or five months. "We want to send missionaries anywhere we can," said Herriman. To download the free handbook, click here.