Open wall churches. Catholic construction of online communities


  • Míriam Díez Bosch Ramon Llull University
  • Josep Lluís Micó Sanz Facultad de Comunicación y Relaciones Internacionales Blanquerna. Universidad Ramon Llull.
  • Josep Maria Carbonell Abelló Facultad de Comunicación y Relaciones Internacionales Blanquerna. Universidad Ramon Llull.
  • Jordi Sánchez Torrents Facultad de Comunicación y Relaciones Internacionales Blanquerna. Universidad Ramon Llull.
  • Alba Sabaté Gauxachs Facultad de Comunicación y Relaciones Internacionales Blanquerna. Universidad Ramon Llull.

Palabras clave:

religion, digital religion, Catholicism, on-line community, technology, participation


The discussion regarding how global Catholic organizations have employed the new tools of digital media has become increasingly poignant and no longer focuses on liturgical limitations but on participation, social justice and new frameworks for reaching new targets. From the Vatican itself, specifically through the Pope’s profiles on social media, Catholicism has proven to have an increasingly responsive presence on the web, although Catholics are usually creative without breaking the rules in the ways they extend their religiosity into new platforms. Newly born digital portals have embraced new participatory tools that shape other ways of understanding communion, which is a key concept among Christian communities. Rather than dwelling on whether Catholic portals are incorporating secular strategies to foster engagement, we explore the 19 most powerful Catholic websites according to Alexa ranking, and divide them into different categories that allow us to analyse how they build communities and thus foster the concept of belonging, which is one of the aims that they pursue. Data have been collected in three different moments (2014, 2015 and 2016) where these websites, belonging to 5 languages (Spanish, English, French, Portuguese and Italian) from 9 countries have been taken into account, according to Catholic population indexes. 


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Cómo citar

Díez Bosch, M., Micó Sanz, J. L., Carbonell Abelló, J. M., Sánchez Torrents, J., & Sabaté Gauxachs, A. (2017). Open wall churches. Catholic construction of online communities. Revista Prisma Social, (19), 298–323. Recuperado a partir de