New rich media Jesus saves!

Any institution around for thousands of years must know a thing or two about product promotion. That’s why churches are a great place to find new marketing tactics. Heck, the Pope is podcasting. Now, a Palm Harbor, Fla.-based minister has produced what we’re guessing is the first interactive rich media representation of Jesus. The three-dimensional animated Christ figure on Rev. R.G. Owsley’s Jesus Speaks Web site greets site visitors, complete with a nodding head, moving lips and blinking eyes. The avatar, created by New York rich media company Oddcast, goes for a traditional representation of Jesus: beard, flowing robes and hockey hair. With a baritone voice that sounds suspiciously like it might be Rev. Owsley’s, Jesus quotes from John 8:31: “The truth will make you free.” Oddcast points out that Jesus is just the latest luminary represented by its VHost technology, joining world-renowned figures Albert Einstein, Elvis Presley and Love Connection host Chuck Woolery.

—Posted by Brian Morrissey