Thursday, December 18, 2008

Social Networking and Ministry

It's crazy, but when I started on facebook I needed to get to the fifty friends mark and once I did that one hundred seemed pretty doable. I made one hundred and then I realized I was just a beginner, I only had one hundred friends...what a loser. You probably get where this is going. There are more questions about facebook, myspace, twitter and the other social networking options out there than whether they are cool or not. How do these things impact relationships, and more specifically a students ability to interact with others? Can relationships start and be maintained using these social networks? What are the moral implications?

I had a conversation today with a youth pastor and a seminary professor who teaches youth ministry regarding this very thing. I am not going to go over the conversation, but I am going to do a series of blogs dealing with this issue from a theological and practical perspective. In the end I will come to some kind of conclusion. I do not know for sure what it will be, but hopefully my journey through this issue will be helpful to you. What this will not be about is safety online, bashing any particular social network, or promoting any particular network. I will likely dive in to some vague ideas for how these things might be used as it is appropriate. This will largely be a theological approach to these things. It will be up to the reader to figure out how to address the practical implications. I will try to get these blogs out in a timely fashion, but it may be one a week. The next post will look at the idea of relationship and community, what are they?

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