[CS-FSLUG] FOSS Evangelism

Josiah Ritchie josiah.ritchie at gmail.com
Fri Nov 16 08:31:34 CST 2007

Ed mentioned that a goal of this list was discussion about improving
our witness of Christ. I've had a post floating in my head and I guess
that motivated me to get it out.

How do we share our faith within open source communities and can we
profile the typical open source community member?

I think the second part of that question must really come first. I'm
not sure we can profile the typical FOSS guy very closely, but there
does seem to be a number of similarities. Many are very closed to
Christian thought, even offended or hostile towards it. However, in my
experience, the majority a very wrong view tainted by lies about
Christians that are propagated in technical schools and the media.
They also seem to not be interested in discussion at all.
Additionally, being generally private people, they are hard to get to
know personally.

I've been most successful in having opportunity to share with
interested individuals when I've been most heavily involved in the
community. It seems quality participation is the key to respect in
these groups. You must demonstrate worth. I'd also say that it is most
effective to target a few and get to know them, build that trust so
they can see a Christian who isn't what they expect and build a bridge
over the roadblock in their heart.

All that said, I can't say I've ever seen my witness online result in
any actions on others parts, but I've been able to share a few times
without losing the opportunity to share again.

I'd be curious what other people's observations are. How do you show
these people the love and wrath of God in an accurate way? What seems
to result in opportunity?

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