The presence of the Church in this environment answers the need for deeper connecting to the Divine and His House.
One simply has to search church, faith, or pray on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram to find a community that speaks directly and intimately to them.
Using the power of social media, churches are effectively communicating and staying close to their congregation while sending the message of openness and welcome to those searching.
Having a church app with social media in one place makes it easy for users to be connected and engaged with their home parish.
Considering the most universally popular apps are social media centric, Pope Francis encourages churches outreach and communications in this powerful means.
How popular is social media?
Nearly 100% of youth and over 50% of mature adults are regular engagers.
When wondering where the people are or how to talk to them one-on-one, the tool of social media delivers the active and searching participant to the Church.
It is hardly an audience that should be ignored.
Monsignor Paul Tighe, the secretary to the Pontifical Council for Social Communications of the Vatican said recently that Catholics should be using social media to make the atmosphere online a positive place where people can deepen their relationships with one another.
He went on to tell an audience of Catholic educators, clergy and staff at an Archdiocese of Los Angeles technology conference that "the digital world is reality," not a fad.
He stated that Catholics need to be part of that world.
"If the church in some way is not present in the digital, we’re going to be absent from the experience and from the lives of many people," Tighe said. "If we withdraw, then we’re leaving those areas to the trolls. We’re leaving it to the bullies."
Despite its traditions, Tighe said the church also needs innovation.
"You can’t just do what you’ve always done," he said.
For Monsignors’ tips on how to engage in the digital culture read the LA Times article.
Churches that have embraced how beneficial social media is to cultivating and widening the area of influence are lending themselves to greater parish participation.
Church is community, neighborly!
Actively communicating… inviting and speaking to them where they are looking and listening is critical.
As Pope Benedict said about social media, "Be soulful."
@chik27 said I need Jesus so I went to church today.
How active Catholic social media users engage in conversation
Although the task may seem daunting at first, there are a few simple things parishes can do to launch social media access. Since social media will only continue to grow in size and its ability to influence, a presence is quite important.
Regardless of the limited resources of most churches, a dedicated social media presence would serve each individual parish and send a message of open doors are here.
If a church can’t afford a paid staff member, consider seeking a volunteer committee that actively focuses its attention on this important aspect of church communications.
With the popularity of social media, parish members, especially youth are a great resource that can be tapped to create and support church social media communications.
Being present and active on social media in today’s world is not just a fad, it’s a communications necessity! If you’re not reaching, engaging, inviting members and potential new parishioners, tragically you’re likely losing them to find other ways to be fed.
Apps and social media are analogous. With the global popularity of the Facebook app, having a church app that connects to social media, fortifies the presence of Church in this dynamic communications medium.
Church apps provide a church-centered pathway for users to participate in their faith community while being fed their daily need for Christ.