Two thousand years ago, the Son of Man walked by the Sea of Galilee and told stories to His friends. With His stories, He applied the Law of the Prophets to the lives of real people.
After His death and Resurrection, His followers shared his story, first by oral tradition and then by written word which became the New Testament canon. Those stories became paintings, altarpieces, murals, statues, and more. In the days when Bibles were rare because they were painstakingly written by monks in monasteries, mothers most likely took their children into churches, stood in front of a painting, and said, “Let me tell you the story of Jesus…”
Times are different. Books are printed and shared electronically. Images of art are shared the same way.
Add social media to the mix and it can be a giant stewpot of confusion. The terms are so different:
- Why would I want anyone to poke me?
- Top News, Recent News, Walls?
- At mention what?
- Hashtag – is that a street name for a new drug?
The answer is simpler than it seems. In the social media age, we have some new tools to do what we’ve done for 2,000 years. It’s what we were called to do:
- Tell a story. Share the ones that teach, delight, and show others you’re real. If you do, they will listen.
- Seek the lost. Encourage those who are hurting – physically or emotionally. Your kind response on social media might be the only nice thing that person sees or reads all day.
- Feed the hungry. Find the not-for-profits in your area who use social media, follow or like them, and promote them. You can promote their fundraisers and ask your own circle of friends to help them when they need it.
Monks who created beautiful Bible manuscripts in the Middle Ages learned to use their tools. So did the printers who printed Bibles after Gutenberg. They did so as a labor of love, to share a great story.
Our new tools can include Facebook, Twitter, FourSquare, and more. It’s where people are and relationships can be cultivated.
Isn’t it time you learned to use them so you too can tell a story?
[CatholicLane Editor's note: Welcome to this debut issue of CatholicLane, where faith drives, and where we use all the new tools social media to connect, support, and share Christ with our world.]