Social networking in pastoral situations

I received a prize from my vicar today! He called it this month’s “keeping an ear to the ground” prize.CakeCutting

The story goes like this. A local lad is currently training in New Zealand for his commercial pilots license. In years past he has played guitar in our worship group, and we’ve kept in touch a bit… via Facebook.

He’s engaged to a local girl who also grew up attending our church and recently updated his Facebook profile with a wedding date in November.

Now at St. Ps we have a system (not fool proof but beginning to work) that we do banns of marriage starting the first Sunday of the month, 2 months before the wedding. This allows for one of our multiplicity of lay service leaders to forget and still have the banns complete well in advance.

Whilst doing the August banns in the book I realised that I’d not got a form on file yet for this much anticipated wedding, and that logically I should be getting them set up in September. Thinking I’d missed something somewhere I left a post-it in the vicars office tray querying the absence of said forms. The prize was my reward!

And to top off the technology, he’s filled out the form on the couple’s behalf courtesy of Skype and email, as said groom-to-be is not due back in the country till mid-September.

So today, I’m thanking God for Facebook, and wondering if other people have found that use of a social networking site has helped spot a possible pastoral glitch or need?

(Cassock arrived yesterday, altered, comfortable and now paid for. Finished last assignment of the academic year tonight – nothing further to hand in until after Licensing, though a little light reading for residential in September!)

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About ramtopsrac

Church of England Priest, child of God, daughter of the New Forest, wife and mother.
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