Being Faithful with Facebook
Social Media have been a topic of great controversy in ministry and there are many who refuse to engage tools such as Facebook and Twitter due to the risks, the potential invasions of privacy, and the time it takes to learn to use the tools efficiently, effectively and appropriately. In youth ministry we must be intentional in acquiring cultural references and staying up to speed with the latest fads and the enduring trends. We are at a distinct disadvantage in terms of communication with young people if we opt out of the current opportunity offered through social media interactions. Youth ministers can’t afford to become irrelevant. The church already runs the risk of irrelevance in the life of youth and emerging adults. So rather than opting out due to fear, why not opt in by taking advantage of the knowledge and practices gained by a faithful and technologically savvy colleague?
I introduce to you Randall Curtis, the Provincial Youth Ministry Coordinator for Province VII (south central US dioceses), and Ministry Developer for Youth and Young Adult Ministry in the Episcopal Diocese of Arkansas. Randall was recently elected the to Forma Board of Directors and hosts a blog called The Holy Geek. Recently he developed and generously offered a youth ministry resource called Faithfully Facebook. I encourage you to check it out. It isn’t a definitive resource, but it’s a great start for those wanting to use Facebook who haven’t the time to learn the tricks of the trade or the safety nets for yourself. It’s also a great tool for talking with teens about Facebook from a Christian perspective.
Randall and I are talking about hosting some Google Chats and a Webinar or two on this topic, so stay tuned and let us know if you’re interested in participating. Feedback is essential as we share our gifts for the common good. You can communicate directly with Randall and other interested folks via Facebook at the Forma group page.
You can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org