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Linked In, Liked, Retweeted, and Friended: Finding God and Oneself in the Digital Age

We’re starting work on the upcoming weekend retreat in August, and I’ve been playing with the title and write up. Father Rusty, the Friar / Priest who will be leading the retreat came across “The Facebook Sonnet” that was recently published in the New Yorker. You should read it, really, its quite haunting and real.

Saint FrancisAlong these same lines, I find myself drawn to some of the words in Pink’s song “F*cking Perfect,” which also seems to address some of the angst of the age; the feeling that we are not perfect, that we are constantly “Mistreated, misplaced, missundaztood, Miss “no way it’s all good”.’ I love the message of that song, that we are in fact perfect, just the way we are. Pink is always so raw and spot on with her songs!

Here’s my working write up for the retreat – With social networking and connectivity often fueling and informing our personal lives, we find ourselves blessed with the ability to keep in touch with friends and family, wherever they are. The digital age has brought new angles to relationships, to communication, to the way we even see ourselves. Now more than ever we have the ability to broadcast our own lives and express ourselves through a multitude of platforms.

With this new social landscape, how do we see ourselves? How do we find God and Jesus in the midst of the digital noise? What is the relevance of the message from 2000 years ago in today’s electronic world?

Our weekend long retreat will look at the quickening pace of our lives, the impact of constantly being linked in, and the draw of being “liked,” and friended. We will have time for discussion, small group work, and presentations. We will look at the life and of a Man who started the original Social Network, and who’s message was so revolutionary that his words have deep meaning across the Millennia.

So, what do you think? Do you have anything to add?

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  • Liz
    June 1, 2011 at 1:32 am

    This is a great topic for your retreat! I love this digital age that we are in! I am able to meet new friends (blogging,fb) and keep up with family that doesn’t live close. However, I also think there is a bad side. I find that no one wants to just sit down and talk anymore. They want to email, text, fb. I guess I miss those days of sitting on the porch and talking.

  • DenaDyer
    June 2, 2011 at 5:57 pm

    Your retreat sounds wonderful. I’m with Liz, above. I miss the days of front porch swings and real, meaningful conversation. (A few of us are like-minded there!)

    I think so many people just partake of technology mindlessly, letting it consume them. It really irks me when someone lets a tweet or ring interrupt a deep (or even shallow conversation).

    BTW, welcome to the High Calling community–I think you’ll find some kindred spirits there. I’m really glad you’ve joined and look forward to getting to “know” you better.