Workflow - Social Media Pastor >> Emilio rises at six and starts coffee. His RSS reader has many blogs to read, plus links to a “Bible in a Year” website that sends him daily updates. It’s no longer strange to be reading the Bible in his RSS reader. It just feels like another way to connect. Emilio is thinking of setting alerts for his community in general, plus for specific issues facing the people in his congregation.
Emilio has a personal blog for reflections, and a website for the Church, as well. Most recently, he’s added a section for using UStream.tv to show live sermons. ...
... Others have been confronted for bringing technology into the church. In some affluent churches, there are even Second Life outposts, and online campuses. It’s a balance of concerns and considerations: are you still part of a community when represented digitally? Does God hear your prayer in pixel form?
... There’s still so much face to face that he does, and much that doesn’t require an Internet connection, but through these options, Emilio has reached out far beyond his local congregation. ...
And the story continues(!) -- as Jon Swanson adds:
Social Media Pastor part two >> Back in his home office this morning, recovering from being away, among the 200 new items in his reader was one that would change the week significantly. Emilio had a vanity search set up with Google, looking for his name on the internet. Usually it only showed his own writing. Today he discovered that Chris Brogan and Jon Swanson had been talking about him... “Workflow - Social Media Pastor.”
As he scanned through the post, all his social networking struggles came rushing to the front of his mind, not the least being, “What if someone from the church reads this?”
Emilio regularly wrestled with what he called his “living in two worlds” question. He had his “real world” congregation, the people he saw and talked with and cried with every day. But then he had his “digital world” friends, the people he saw and talked with and cried with…every day. To call the latter a congregation was a stretch. But they were friends, he was their touchpoint for questions about God and church. He even was in conversations once about doing a wedding for a couple he only had contact with through twitter.
If he were hired to work full-time in social media, working as campus pastor for an online campus, for example, it wouldn’t be so hard.
There are already 60+ comments on those 2 blog posts. Read both blog posts in its entirety, and comment here or there. How has social media changed your approach to ministry?
I'm beginning to see churches hiring internet campus pastors and social media pastors. What are you seeing?
-- DJ Chuang, Digital Initiatives Director @ Leadership Network