God loves me — regardless of my Klout.

-- Text of Tueday's morning chapel --


 I am working at home, daughter sees I ‘m on Facebook and says

 ”Dad, I ‘m better than you.”
"I have more friends - and your friends are not real friends, only colleagues from work"

How do we determine a person’s value? By the number of “friends” (or: contacts on Facebook)? Instead of Facebook friends, you can also insert other things: the house you built, the job you got, the money that you earn, or your friends in real life.

A second scene: My daughter uploaded a new profile picture in a social network.

After uploading she prompted her friends for comments. Within minutes, she received feedback. Fortunately, it was a lot of positive comments.

 I know that teenagers need feedback by their peer group. The internet is sometimes brutal an sometimes brutally honest. What would have happened if my daughter had not gotten any feedback at all? Would she view herself a “victim”? Would she have lost her value?

But it is not only young people who are affected by social networks

 A colleague joined Facebook. After I confirmed his fiend request, Facebook displayed a message on my screen: “N.N. has 3 friends only - help him find more friends.”

Such a looser, I thought and then I started to realize what I just had done in my mind.

Jesus, an open person

Pastor Martin Hoegger, ecumenical officer of the Reformed Church in the Canton of Vaud, preached the following sermon during the opening service of the 19th European Christian Internet Conference, at the Ecumenical Institute Bossey, 2 June 2014.

I. Jesus, the open communicator par excellence

The theme of this conference is "Open Internet, Open Church, Open Source."

I would like to meditate on that little word "open".

First and foremost about Jesus as a completely “open” person.

Jesus was open to God and open to human beings: he lived that throughout his life. We read it in the Gospels.

Certainly, there is a mystery in the person of Jesus: his relationship with the one he calls his Father. Gradually he reveals the mystery of this relationship to those he meets.

When we walk with him, he gradually also reveals us the depth of this relationship.

Let us now ask a question: when was Jesus open, at the maximum?

I think it is on the cross. I propose you to read the narrative of the crucifixion according Luke in that way. (Luke 23,32-47)

At that paradoxical moment, Jesus is open to God and to human beings: he continues to communicate with heaven and earth.

Yet it seems that heavens and earth are completely closed for Jesus.

Heaven is closed: God seems to hide and the sky turned dark.

The earth is closed: all his disciples abandoned him, the leaders insulted him, the soldiers mocked him.

Yet in that terrible moment of closing, Jesus does not retire unto himself, he remains open, he continues to communicate.

Free Software: the idea, the values and where it's going

Some thoughts:


Who of you listeners owns a mobile phone? Everyone of us are carring a small computer all the time, but question is who control this device?


Why software matters?

Because there is so many computers in every home

If you don’t believe, count the amount of computers in your home…

 There is software almost “everywhere”, t.ex. fridge, there can be software inside the nowadays fridge

All these computers run by softwares.

Who control softwares controls computers.


Free software gives you four freedoms.

- freedom of use

- freedom to use or study and to understand the code

- freedom to share software

- freedom to improve


The history of free software started 1983 with practical problem; how this printer works and could it work better?


Knowledge of coding give possibility to make you own applications based on other works. 


Free softwares t.ex.:

Open internet, open church? New community structures in the global church

Opening Keynote: Open internet, open church? New community structures in the global church - Roger Schmidt, Digital Encounters (Hexagone)

Roger Schmidt took us for a tour de force of the history of the internet.

1.        In the beginning the Internet is used as an Information Superhighway. Information in large scale is retrievable through the Internet.

2.        The next step defines the Internet as the social web. No longer is the Internet a network of information, but of everybody. Everybody are able to connect and share. Everybody can participate.

3.        The present age. Internet of Everything. Everything is connected. We are all having our mobiles connected etc. Connections are no big deal anymore.

The advantages are many, but is the Internet only progress. Roger Schmidt mentioned four areas, where we think we are free, but the freedom can be questioned. (From the book Digital Freedom Traps by Werner Thiede.

Only two weeks left until ECIC starts in Bossey near Geneva

There is expectation in the air. Only two weeks left until the 19th European Christian Internet Conference starts.

Webpastors, webworkers and webdevelopers will meet from 2-5 June at the Ecumenical Institute in Bossey, near Geneva. We are looking forward to inspiring networking, new ideas and interesting discussions. 

Registration is now closed. If you were planning to join the conference, but haven't registered yet, please write to info@ecic.org to check whether you can still participate.

The topic of the conference will be "Open Internet, Open Church, Open Source".

Please check out our programme and our speakers

If you have already registered and have questions, please be patient. You will shortly receive an e-mail about some practicalities. 



Registration is now open!

Registration at a WCC event in Evanston, United States, in 1949

You can now register for ECIC19. The conference will take place  2-5 June 2014 at the Ecumenical Institute of the World Council of Churches at Bossey, Switzerland.

Take advantage of a special early registration price of €490 by booking before 15 March. 

Make sure you've read the conference information, then head straight to the registration form!

And don't forget to tell your contacts in churches and Christian organisations throughout Europe about this event!

Shaped by our Tools: Effects of Modern Media

Ciarán McMahon described to ECIC participants some features of cyberspace, as well as its effects on the human mind. A key message of the lecture was to highlight the virtual reality as a unique operational context rather than as a mediated fantasy land. Cyberspace was described as a reality with its own inherent rules and characteristics. This all is shaping who we are as humans both online and offline, face-to-face. The person you are online is not necessarily the same as you are offline.

Online context is different from offline context

The web has become more a space than a connection of computers, McMahon emphasised. Thus, we can perceive it as a space of telepresence. Also web developers and designers want to hide its function as a mediator. Online is not secondary to offline but parallel to it. It is more and more an operational environment in itself, thus we need to understand its inherent features.

Some key notions about the online context that make it different from the offline are:

Is Social Media guided by the Common Sense?

Ethics in social media, workshop information blanket

The workshop on Ethics in Social Media gathered together on a sunny Wednesday afternoon in Dublin. Ralf Peter Reimann, the facilitator of the workshop came up with three relevant topics of discussion, which the group commented on and prioritized, subsequently adding a fourth one. (Votes In quantity.)

  •  Data security & data protection (I)
  •  Private/public or private/personal/public (IIII)
  • Social ”value” of a person or measurement (III)
  •  Interaction in social media, social media guideline (III)


It seemed that the questions on private/public were mostly important for the participants. Thus, the group shared experiences and good practices of how this issue has been managed. In the end the consensus was that as there are many kinds of people, there are also many ways to deal with the public/private issues. No one solution can be determined as a good practice as everyone has the freedom to draw their own line.

A third category of personal was also established. Many people thought that the personal can be shared online, and it is even necessary as you can’t hide yourself or control your online personality. Then again, the private is often hidden.

My Story – Online Counselling

Sigurdur Hafthorsson, communication officer of the church of Sweden had a presentation on the online counseling. He told about the road of the church to online crisis counseling services.
Church of Sweden's online crisis counselling service is reaching out to people where they are at. Suicide prevention is the main task.

The goal is that Church of Sweden is active in digital media. Counseling is available for all Swedish speakers in the internet.

The Background: Crisis counseling via telephone 112 on call.  (70 000 calls a year),but  young adults don´t use this line. Earlier initiatives on online presence: Lunar storm- swedish site, chatting and hanging. There are many internet priests, chatting and discussing with youngsters. Church has also Q&A-“Ask the priest”- on the web. Church gets some crisis-questions via these services but the main aim is not crisis or counseling.

Pilot study: looked at the others sites (seelsorge.net) This is not new service we are providing (Switzerland had it for a decade), in Finland the Lutheran church has same kind of counseling service in internet.

Medium: all the media are different.
-    If someone is standing on the bridge, ready to jump, would he ask for help by e-mail? Either he would chat.  Telephone line is for immediate crisis, Sigurdur noted.

Church decided to go with chat and the mail. 4 days of a week, from 20-24 hours. One message- one answer. This is not supposed to be ongoing process. If they want to continue talking to priest, they will be advised to contact local parish and priest.

Project started in 2012 and the page will be opened in spring 2014.
-It is how things work in large churches, told Sigurdur and admitted that he is a bit disappointed how slowly things are happening and changing.