Ministry Tip of the Week
The internet is available to everyone. It can be used for any number of purposes. And it is being used, by everyone and for every purpose. The Church must use it as well. And she does! We have at our finger tips a resource like the world of evangelization has never known. Through digital resources like Youtube, the message and power of the Gospel can be transmitted with near-unlimited expressions and (literally) to the ends of the earth. Even more impressively, this is done at a moment's notice - instantly - and then is stored for anyone and everyone to encounter for years to come at any time. To top it off, we can be anywhere when we access it.
For better or worse, through iphones and the like, the Church can now communicate at any moment; yep, a small pocket device keeps the world in constant communication. A world antagonistic to the Gospel is taking full advantage of this, right now in fact. But so too are many, many faithful men and women of the Church.
And we must as well.
It's simple. Start connecting people to the abundance of powerful resources available to us. Spread them to friends and families. Get them up on Facebook pages, websites, via email, and by any other means you might have at your disposal. Below is a digital list of ten different Youtube "ideas" to wet your appetite.
Struggling to convince a teen to go to mass? Chris Stefanic has a gift for reaching the youth:
Father Stan's eccentric rapping has had great success evangelizing. This one's on chastity:
Audrey Assad has a Youtube channel with wonderful recordings of her songs.
Chris Padgett uses his strange and quirky humor to open people up to the Gospel.
Mark Hart tells the history of Salvation...in pop music! A great tool when teaching Scripture.
Steubenville Conference talks are now available in groves. This one's phenomenal!
Jason Evert is also a chastity "specialist" for the modern culture. He has a Youtube channel.
Spirit Juice Studios is making waves on Youtube. This one's about finding your vocation.
For powerful pro-life materials, Students for Life has dynamic and engaging videos.
Father Robert Barron has a Youtube channel that engages the culture on it's own terms.
The Gospel message can and will be heard by this generation, if we but learn how to express it in a way that they can understand, and through methods that take advantage of the communication channels at work in this culture.
The youth are plugged in. The adults are just as mesmerized by the new technologies. The world is listening. Let's start speaking their language, and let's take advantage of the many gifts and talents available to us as the Body of Christ.
"I can't explain such and such very well...but this guy can. Here, watch this video and tell me what you think!"
We're a "Sesame Street" culture, which means we learn through entertainment. Our goal, of course, is to lead people deeper and out of that world. Silence and reflection, prayerful experience of God's loving presence and a transformed life. These are the goal. But Youtube is one of many channels of evangelization now available to us as Church, and it's a tool that helps us effectively engage people where they're at.
I've included here a few of the many ways men and women of the Church are already using Youtube to do this. But this is just a small glimpse of what's available. Some videos are better than others, but the sheer volume of options means that there's something for everyone. It's up to us then to pay prayerful attention to what the people in our life need to hear, and then find creative ways (such as Youtube) to get them to listen.
Video is a powerful tool. We all remember Bishop Fulton Sheen. Just think what he would have done with this kind of unlimited, world-wide access literally at his fingertips!
If you don't already, use fun and engaging Youtube clips when you teach (if you can), and think about sharing them with your friends and family.
"Let us remember that faith is not something we possess, but something we share. Every Christian is an apostle." (Pope Francis)