We’ve all seen the power of social media for good and bad. For those who of us who work in ministry and faith-based institutions, we naturally understand ways to communicate messages of redemption and empowerment through any and all means available.
But not everyone will seize this opportunity to use social media to proclaim faith or maximize the power of the online platforms to impact the masses. In fact, some churches will minimize or dismiss the influence of social media. Many leaders have been unwilling to adapt to strategic methods of sharing and reluctantly create a few touch points in order to simply have a presence – a tweet here, a Facebook post there. Others will be a bit overzealous and position themselves with proud images or preachy tones of self-promotion – a stigma that has been perpetuated through perceptions of church culture for decades.
Yesterday, I contributed to a conversation aimed at exploring ministry in the age of social media. Divine Dialogue, is a podcast dedicated to discussing social and religious issues affecting the African-American community hosted by writer and educator Candice Benbow. Along with two other guest experts, Candice invited us to look at what it means to be a responsible steward of social media as a member of a faith community.
We explored ways in which relationships and conversations can begin every day through social media as well as how connecting with leaders of churches through online platforms allows for deepening relationships, knowledge of pressing needs and prayer requests, and even encouragement throughout the week. We also tackled the concept of personal branding for ministry leaders and the difficulty that often comes with balancing a proactive yet humble approach.
Push play and join the convo below. How do you think social media impacts the work of ministry?