Tag Archives: social communications

The Digital Nun: A Benedictine continuity in social media

Can you believe that Benedictines can do anything in addition to prayer, and more prayer? Well, I hope so. Benedictines and nuns to boot, have given the world lots of innovative things that continue to use today. For example, writing, singing different forms of music, social communications, different forms of alcohol, etc.

The Benedictines are always interesting people, whether in the 9th century, 18th century or the 21st century. Sister Catherine Wybourne, OSB, and the nuns of Holy Trinity Monastery (Howton Grove, Herefordshire, UK).

Sister Catherine is the prioress of the Benedictine nuns at this small monastery with competencies in the secular world and in the world of God and the Church.

Sister Catherine and the nuns of Holy Trinity Monastery engage us on level of faith formation, the Benedictine Charism and social communications. Her disposability for the sake of Christ’s Gospel and His Church.

Listen to Laura Lynch’s interview of Sister Catherine. You won’t be disappointed.

And if you are still interested in social media and the search of God, or least the perspective of this Benedictine nun, Dame Catherine, may I suggest:

  1. How Many iPhone Developers Wear Wimples?” (WSJ, May 2, 2011)
  2. Catherine Wybourne: The Digital Nun
  3. Prayer and Work (1994) with Dom Columba Cary-Elwes (who by the way is the founding prior of St Louis Abbey)

Tweeting. Are you? Join me.


Since the Holy Father is tweeting, I thought I would re-activate my Twitter account. 
Hope to be a good Catholic presence in the digital world.
Follow me at @paulzalonski

Benedict XVI to tweet… join in

You heard yesterday that Pope Benedict XVI is now tweeting. Terrific!

The Papal Twitter account is up and running: @Pontifex

B16 twitter page.jpg

As of right now, the English page has 381K followers, the German has 9.5K, the Spanish 88K, the Italian has 36K, the French has 7k and the Arabic has 3,000.

The Press Office of the Holy See said the following about the Papal presence in the digital media.

The The Pope’s presence on Twitter
is a concrete expression of his conviction that the Church must be present in
the digital arena. This initiative is best understood in the context of his
reflections on the importance of the cultural space that has been brought into
being by the new technologies. In his Message for World Communications Day
2009, which was published on the same day as the Vatican’s Youtube channel was
opened, Pope Benedict spoke of the necessity of evangelizing the ‘digital
continent’ and he invited young believers, in particular, to introduce
into the culture of this new environment of communications and information
technology the values on which you have built your lives

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Speaking of God in 140 characters

Pope with iPad.jpgThe Pope will tweet. Is this a mortal sin or a gospel value?

In today’s L’Osservatore Romano edition Mario Ponzi
writes of Pope Benedict’s latest venture into tweeting. The Pope is not going to give up his love of books, old fashion research and handwriting his talks, but he’s diving into more deeply in the digital world. He’ll have to keep his message
to 140 characters. Can he do it? I am sure the clarity of the Pope can be
limited to a mere 140 characters. It’s ancient history now in cyberworld but it
was June 2011 that the Holy Father touched his own iPad launching the Vatican’s
News.va portal; tweeting in five languages
is a polymath way of  communicating
at the Vatican.

Archbishop Claudio Maria Celli, 71, president of the Pontifical
Council for Social Communications
 since 2007, last week delivered his keynote address at
the 100th anniversary of Our Sunday Visitor. Celli has been hardworking in
moving the Holy See into the 21st century with an acceptance of social media and its benefits for communicating the gospel effectively today.

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Archbishop of Hartford Henry Mansell blogs, tweets

HJM.jpgToday, as you know the Church begins a Year of Faith. We also observe today the 50th anniversary of the Second Vatican Council. Not least in the list of initiatives is the inauguration of a blog written by Archbishop Henry J. Mansell, the archbishop of Hartford. 

You may read the blog here.
He also tweets here.
The Hartford archbishop joins a growing list of North American bishops who are intelligently using social communications to fling abroad the Good News, to spread the joy of being persons of faith on a journey to encounter the Lord. 
Social media does, in fact, build communion among persons of faith and non-faith. It bridges the gap among those who believe in Jesus and and those who don’t, or are searching. Blogging, tweeting and using Facebook are but means to an end. They only make sense if there the media they employ have something to say, attractive with beautiful images (traditional art and with contemporary images) and updated with regularity. Kudos to Archbishop Mansell. As point of comparison, in Connecticut Mansell is the only blogging bishop; Bridgeport doesn’t have a bishop at the moment and Norwich’s Bishop Cote and Stamford’s Ukrainain Eparch Bishop Paul don’t use social media at the moment. Hint.
Let’s also acknowledge that yesterday was the Archbishop’s 75th birthday. May God grant him many years.
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About the author

Paul A. Zalonski is from New Haven, CT. He is a member of the Fraternity of Communion and Liberation, a Catholic ecclesial movement, and an Oblate of Saint Benedict. Contact Paul at paulzalonski[at]yahoo.com.
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