On Sunday, Pope Benedict XVI offered a new command to the world’s priests: Thou Shalt Blog. It was in the Pope’s message for the 44th World Communications Day that priests and others read B16’s take on preaching the gospel in the digital age:
Responding adequately to this challenge amid today’s cultural shifts, to which young people are especially sensitive, necessarily involves using new communications technologies. The world of digital communication, with its almost limitless expressive capacity, makes us appreciate all the more Saint Paul’s exclamation: “Woe to me if I do not preach the Gospel” (1 Cor 9:16)
Keep in mind that the almost 83-year-old pontiff is the man of Pope2you and his own YouTube channel. As Mashable mused a few days ago, the pope “gets it” more than many of his younger clergy when it comes to reaching Catholic youth. It isn’t enough to have a parish web site; the pastor should be blogging, and tweeting and preaching the Good News out there on the Internet to combat the less positive messages infecting cyberspace. But, as Faith and Reason pointed out, they need to remember it isn’t their tech prowess they are showing off but rather, faith in JC.
The two priests at my parish are both on Facebook, although each uses it differently. One tends to write brief movie reviews and the other promotes events such as the Walk for Life. But both have a presence. One tried blogging last summer, but his posts were very long, something that most bloggers will tell you is a cardinal sin. Neither of them use Twitter, but that’s OK because so far, neither does the Pope.
There are a number of priests and nuns out in the blogosphere, including him, him and her, as well as plenty of non-ordained Christians, Jews and Muslims sharing faith, inspiration, commentary and all manner of takes on the world. As someone once said, “Here comes everybody.” I love it.