In the past month, the Office of Communications of the USCCB (United States Conference of Catholic Bishops) published a document on social media guidelines. The publication of the guidelines coincided with a recent conversation among the team members of TeamRCIA—Diana, Nick, Rita, Miriam, and Rita—during which we discussed our desire to grow our Web site with more interaction, creative discussion, and peer support among all who visit our site. We want to become a virtual community of initiation ministers who minister to one another. What if TeamRCIA could become a dynamic, cross-cultural, international, community of support, encouragement, education, and resourcing for the work of faithfully implementing the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults!
Evangelization and catechesis
The guidelines document recognizes that the world of digital communication [has] almost limitless expressive capacity that can enhance the work of evangelization, catechesis, and apostolic action (note the echoes of Paragraph #75 here!) in ways that we have yet to imagine. The Church can use social media, the document reads, to encourage respect, dialogue, and honest relationships—in other words, ‘true friendship.’ We know that TeamRCIA is already a community of over 8,000 friends and colleagues with a wealth of knowledge and experience. Moving forward, we hope to both build and experience our community in new and exciting ways.
Recognizing that social media offer both opportunities and challenges, the guidelines document calls out three in particular: visibility, community, and accountability. Indeed, we at TeamRCIA are striving to become more visible as a consistent, user-friendly, online resource for those who strive to be faithful to the vision of the Rite and its effective implementation in a variety of settings. Our hope for community building through future webinars, real-time interaction, and online discussion and consultation inspires us to seek new offerings in the near future. Accountable to one another and to the call of Vatican II for the restoration of the Catechumenate, we will continue to grapple with the cultural, social, economic, and individual issues that call for our pastoral response.
Share your thoughts
Your suggestions for helping us achieve our goals, and your response to this post would be most welcome!