Social Media and Blogging are a great way to connect with people. Used together they can be an unbelievable tool for ministry. Here are some of my thoughts on how social media and blogging can be used for ministry in powerful ways.

Keeping People Informed

One of the great things about blogging and social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook is they can be leveraged for passing on information. They are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. If you’re a pastor, missionary or ministry leader, social media and a good blog can help you pass along information. The only caution that I have is using these platforms exclusively to pass on information. A blog and social media platforms can never take the place of face-to-face interaction. Using these platforms exclusively to pass on information becomes more of an advertisement rather than relationship.

Sharing Stories

When was the last time you shared your story or a story with the people that you connect with. Stories are a powerful way to connect with people. Even better, take a picture and tell a story at the same time.

I attended a conference recently that was so powerful I wanted others to know about it. The truth is, it’s never the same unless you’re sitting in the room. However, using pictures and telling stories on our church blog helped people to connect with what I was hearing. Later, when I had the chance to talk about the conference on a Sunday morning, in front of my congregation, people actually clapped with excitement.

Staying Connected to Supporters

Blogging and social media can also help you stay connected to supporters. This is especially true for missionaries and ministry leaders who are disconnected by distance. A blog and social media platforms can help you stay connected in between face-to-face interactions. Use your blog to share stories (see above) about ministry. Set up a Facebook page and a private group to share and receive prayer requests from prayer supports. Use Twitter to connect with other ministry leaders and colleagues.Google + is a growing platform for video chat. Google + is quickly becoming a milkshake of Twitter, Facebook and Skype. I would focus on blogging, Facebook and Twitter, in that order but keep in mind the potential of these online tools are huge! We should leverage them for good. Using two or three of these tools can help you connect with more people in more ways that you ever thought possible.

Bridging the Gap Between Face-Face Interactions

I often meet missionaries and ministers who are disconnected from their supporters and congregations. They know it, and so do the people they work with. Some of this is beyond our control and some of the fault lies with us as ministry leaders. If anything, pastors, ministry leaders, and missionaries need to place connecting with others, communication and community development at the top of the priority list. This should include face-to-face interaction (can you say coffee), voice-to-voice interaction (phone), and text-to-person interaction (blogging, social media).One of my biggest pet peeves is the one way relationship pastors, missionaries and ministry leaders often have with their congregations and supporters. Serve in our ministry, give money to this, that or me, support this project. The list is can be never ending. It’s important for us to remember that LEADING IS SERVING! Consider developing a holistic approach to connecting with others, developing relationships and serving the people in your sphere of influence. And let me know your ideas and experiences in this arena!

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