Over at Nate Silver’s FiveThirtyEight (you’ve heard of him predicting everything from presidential elections to sports tournaments), they did an interesting analysis: At IMDB, when people searched “reference to ____,” “Jesus Christ” and “God” were the two most popular terms used to fill in the blank.
Here’s the full list:
So, what does this say about us? Probably a lot of things. For one, it speaks to just how much religion (particularly Christianity) is woven into our collective consciousness – there are plenty of other religious terms on there, you’ll notice.
Two, it’s an indicator of how people are increasingly combining their search for faith with technology. This is IMDB we’re talking about, the Internet Movie Database. People are searching for cultural and artistic references to religious themes, and they’re using the internet to do it.
That’s something to keep in mind when you’re looking to bridge the gap between your physical religious community and the online realm. It can be as simple as a Facebook and Twitter page to start. Maybe next you sign up for Faithstreet to add more cohesion to your online presence, and before you know it you’re implementing online giving to take full advantage of all technology has to offer to faith communities.
We’ll leave you with a quote from the FiveThirtyEight article:
But if anything, John Lennon’s old boast doesn’t hold up. No, the Beatles aren’t bigger than Jesus.
This time, the proof is in the data.