Social media maven and friend Meredith Gould caught my eye and made me smile over on Google + yesterday with her super cool “Social Media: Don’t Be That Church” video. I’ll share it below, but I have to say that part of the reason I smiled was because I’d just come from a special meeting this week with my pastor where one of the discussion topics was precisely our use of new media technologies in our parish. I’m so lucky to work with a pastor who “gets it” and in a Diocese that has given us the green light not only to embrace social media, but to actively, creatively emphasize it in our work.
Meredith is to me a real role model of innovation in the realm of the Church and social media. A convert to Catholicism, Meredith has written some amazing books including her awesome The Word Made Flesh: Communicating Church and Faith Today. My friend and CatholicMom.com contributor Lisa Mladinich said of Meredith’s book:
Meredith Gould’s ground-breaking new book, The Word Made Flesh: Communicating Church and Faith Today, is an answered prayer! Dr. Gould’s passion, humor and wisdom unite in this highly enjoyable guide to creating powerful church communications rooted in scripture and Christian values. The power of the written word to evangelize, unify and uplift the church community is revealed in a neatly crafted, user-friendly manual devoted to spiritual discernment and the establishment of best practices in this essential area of ministry. A delightful read for pastors, bishops and all those involved in communication ministries, this practical and inspiring book is packed with Gould’s considerable knowledge and expertise, and is presented with rare clarity and insight. Designed for use by groups and individuals, The Word Made Fresh includes exercises for discerning spiritual gifts and thought points for further inquiry. Gould explains the relevance and uses of learning styles, demographics and cultural issues, empowering church ministries to reach every soul in every pew while remaining faithful to the Person of Jesus Christ.
In a time when many of us are actively talking about the use of social media in our Church, Meredith Gould has been leading –but more importantly facilitating — the conversation for years. A great example of her innovation is the weekly “Church Social Media” chat she holds on Twitter. If you find yourself Tweeting on a Tuesday night, look for the hastag #chsocm and dive in.
As we contemplate how to “Be That Church”, I’m glad we have faith filled folks like Meredith Gould who are ready, willing and able to help lead the charge.