by Lauren Hunter @ChurchTechToday
When I attended the Bayside Thrive conference last month, I had the pleasure of attending a break out session called, “Social Media Bootcamp” where I met Margaret Feinberg, acclaimed Christian author of two dozen books and multiple Bible studies. She was gracious enough to let me interview her about how the Church must view, use, and embrace social media:
1. How has social media technology affected your faith and profession as a Christian author?
I don’t think social media has affected my faith as much as it has opened up avenues for the way I express my faith and journey with Christ. Whether it’s trying to sum up a God-moment in 140 characters or less on Twitter (@mafeinberg) or engaging in a discussion on Facebook on how to handle the awkward silence that comes with leading and being in a small group, I’ve seen technology affecting the way we engage and discuss issues of faith. The potential reach as well as opportunities for cross-pollination of learning is mind-boggling.
2. What is the biggest stumbling block for church when it comes to using social media as a viable communication tool?
I think the biggest stumbling block is simply buying into the myth that engaging in social media is somehow optional for the church today. It’s a requirement. I have friends who I can call repeatedly without response, but when I message them on Facebook I receive a response in less than three minutes. The way people engage in conversations, commit to attend a gathering, and share their lives is changing—and the church must be at the forefront.
3. What are the top 3 suggestions you have for church communicators to get over this hurdle?
First, make sure the person who handles communication in your church loves social media. If the person you’re considering for the role hears the word “mac” and thinks of a quarter pounder with fries, you’re not choosing wisely…
Margaret Feinberg: A popular speaker at churches and leading conferences such as Catalyst and Thrive, Margaret Feinberg was recently named one of the ’30 Emerging Voices’ who will help lead the church in the next decade by Charisma magazine and one of the ’40 Under 40′ who will shape Christian publishing by Christian Retailing, she has written more than two dozen books and Bible studies including the critically acclaimed The Organic God, The Sacred Echo, Scouting the Divine (Zondervan) and their corresponding DVD Bible studies. She is known for her relational teaching style and inviting people to discover the relevance of God and His Word in a modern world. (Article originally published in Church Tech Today. Used by Permission)