Catholic new media tips

I was recently invited to talk about Catholic new media tips on Real Presence Live, a Catholic radio show hosted by Fr. Brian Gross, a priest of the Diocese of Bismarck (ND). Paul Braun, Director of Communications for the Diocese of Fargo (ND), joined us on the show as well.

Here are a few takeaways from our conversation:

» Catholics need to be present in the digital space

Trying to stand out among an endless sea of competing voices on social media can be overwhelming and discouraging for Catholic parishes, schools and ministries.

Instead of recoiling, steadily engage and make positive contributions to the sea of digital content.

» Don’t be afraid of negative comments

Parishes and dioceses can get nervous about using certain social platforms.

The potential for negative comments or off-the-wall tirades on social media is real. However, Catholics should approach digital conversations with charity and common sense.

I don’t think we need to be as concerned about what people think about us as long as what we’re doing is the truth and expressed with a pure heart.

-Paul Braun, Director of Communications | Diocese of Fargo

» Your website is a tool for evangelization

Yes, a parish website is meant to serve current parishioners. However, existing members of your church are only a small portion of your complete audience.

Many visitors of parish websites likely aren’t an active member of the parish community. As a result, think of the first impression that non-parishioners may formulate after landing on your homepage.

We need to be charitable in all things – not just when we’re talking about the [Catholic] faith. If we are charitable in all things, then when we do present the faith [on the web], people will [be more open to] receive it.

Fr. Brian Gross, Pastor | Church of the Epiphany, Watford City (ND)

Listen to the complete 14-minute broadcast in the video above.