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Digital Church Workshops

Due to the COVID-19 situation we have re-arranged the Digital Church Conference to be an online conference.

Time to Fish

In the light of so many church leaders and congregations looking for guidance and support to begin to engage with digital media at this time, this particular workshop will help leaders begin to think about the relationship between online church and church online. I will also invite us all to begin to think about the future opportunities technology opens up to the church of the 21st century.

  • Conference 1 — Digital Church: Essentials (Completed)
  • Conference 2 — Digital Church: Rebooting Church (Completed)
  • Conference 3 — Digital Church: Creativity and Creatives (Completed)
  • Conference 4 — Digital Church: Time to Fish (8 June 2020)

Sorry — the conference is FULLY BOOKED and no more tickets are available

(Workshop 4) Digital Church: Time to Fish

8 Jun, 2020

Time Leader Summary
11.00 Martin Fair Introduction “Going Fishing - on the other side of the boat”
11.20 Pete Phillips Session 1: “How do people engage with faith online?”
11.50 Laura Digan /
Joel Nicholas /
Ross Watters
Session 2: "Digital Culture and Jesus"
12.20   Break
12.30 Albert Bogle /
Martin Fair
Session 3: “What are the Big Questions of those looking for faith online: Identity / Purpose / Destiny”
1.00 Sandy Forsyth /
Sarah Lane Ritchie
Session 4: “What are the Big Questions of those looking for faith online: Where is God in all this?”
1.30   Lunch Break
2.00 Coffee Shop: 4 breakout rooms
2.55 Albert Bogle Close

Throughout the whole series of workshops we are especially keen to include creatives in the process – be that pioneers, artists, film makers, musicians, writers – and also those engaged in church leadership, formation, and the practice of digital church. We’ll also be inviting a number of professional theologians to be present at each event. Materials presented at the event, and created around each event will be collected for publication at the end of the series of workshops.

The content will reflect the monthly reflections of Sanctuary First’s online discipleship materials, while being specifically related in the seminar to aspects of digital expressions of church. We want to look closely at what it might mean for churches across Scotland to be spiritual hubs for their local communities both online and offline. How might your church develop an online presence, a digital expression of Church, to serve the wider community? Details relating to contributors and content will from time to time be be updated on the site.


Right Rev Martin Fair
Martin Fair
Very Rev Albert Bogle
Albert Bogle
Dr Peter Phillips
Peter Phillips
Dr Sarah Lane Ritchie
Sarah Lane Ritchie
Rev Dr Sandy Forsyth
Sandy Forsyth
Laura Digan
Laura Digan
Ross Watters
Ross Watters
Joel Nicholas
Joel Nicholas

Martin Fair is the current Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland and minister of St Andrew's Church in Arbroath.

Albert Bogle describes the Sanctuary First vision as the catalyst that inspires christians to re-imagine the internet as the open door which creates possibilities to re-think church for every generation. Appointed in April 2016 as minister of Sanctuary First (a pioneering ministry being developed by Falkirk Presbytery), he develops the aspiration that Sanctuary First will become a worshipping congregation of the Church of Scotland on the internet. As leader of Sanctuary First he is keen to develop partnerships with congregations to inspire them to see the potential of the internet as a communication tool.

Pete Phillips has many years experience of teaching/researching the New Testament, and now explores the interface between all things digital and theological. During his time at CODEC, Pete has pioneered new ways of exploring theology among the Digital Humanities and also developed the world's first MA in Digital Theology, hosted within Cranmer Hall's suite of MA programmes. Pete loves playing with tech, hacking new data, developing new opportunities for research. A lot of Pete’s work takes him outside of Durham – working with the Church of England’s Digital Team.

Sarah Lane Ritchie is a Lecturer in Theology & Science at the University of Edinburgh. She holds a PhD in Science & Religion from the University of Edinburgh, an Msc in Science & Religion from the University of Edinburgh, an MDiv from Princeton Theological Seminary, and a BA in Philosophy & Religion from Spring Arbor University. Her research interests lie at the intersection of theology, philosophy, and the various brain sciences, and particularly involve questions surrounding the human mind/brain, embodied religious belief and experience, cognitive science of religion, and evolutionary psychology of religion. Her 2019 book is published by Cambridge University Press and titled Divine Action and the Human Mind.

Rev Dr Sandy Forsyth is a lecturer in practical theology and mission at New College, School of Divinity, University of Edinburgh, and is a Church of Scotland minister. Much of his recent work has been focused upon developing 'fresh expressions of church' through pioneer ministry and church planting, including a report to the General Assembly of 2019 and an introductory public training course at New College.

Laura Digan In her final year training for Ministry in the Church of Scotland, Laura has enjoyed contributing to and working with Sanctuary First. Before entering Ministry Laura worked in Communications for a much-loved UK brand. Laura specialised in online communications to establish and grow a brand culture.

Ross Watters is a Youth Minister at Gorebridge Parish Church where he has ministered since 2010. He also works as the Project Leader for Gorebridge Opportunities Ltd., a youth work charity that was started by the church and runs drop-in nights. He did a gap year with Youth For Christ before studying Youth and Community Work with Theology at ICC in Glasgow. As a student he worked with Paul Beautyman at the Gilmerton New Church which was a pilot youth church project put together by Church Without Walls. He has extensive experience of working in partnership with Young Life International with day missions and residential camps. Ross is currently working with Reign Ministries to help provide Church Youth Ministry placements for students in Scotland.

Joel Nicholas is an Assistant Youth Minister at Gorebridge Parish Church. He came up through the youth programme as a Young Leader and was appointed in 2017. He also works as a Youth Worker with Gorebridge Opportunities Ltd. Joel was on the chaplaincy team as a student at St David’s RC High School and was on placement with Young Life in Ohio before studying Youth Work, Mission and Theology through Reign Ministries with Springdale College (now ForMission College). He has also worked closely with Young Life International in Scotland and has been supported by their Global Leadership Programme.

Conference Planning

Digital Church: Essentials

Room 5.3, Lister Learning and Teaching Centre, 5 Roxburgh Place, Edinburgh, EH8 9SU

Digital Church: Rebooting Church

Online —

Digital Church: Creativity and Creatives

Online —

Digital Church: Time to Fish

Online —