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CHURCH and SOCIAL MEDIA 2016 – Year in Review, Part 1

social-media-2

2016 has, most definitely, been a year of creative innovation and unexpected change in the Church, Social Media, and Technology space!

To celebrate this exciting year, I’m happy to spotlight my favorite picks for the very best Church and Social Media news, views, and trends of 2016.

Congratulations to all of this year’s truly remarkable church social media innovators, contributors, and colleagues. And, of course, a big “Thank You” goes out to all my amazing social media family, followers, and friends for all your fantastic suggestions, support and encouragement throughout the year. Much Love & Appreciation!

Here’s my ‘Best of 2016 Church and Social Media’ stories:

What favorite Church Social Media stories of 2016 would you like to share with our readers? Would love to hear from you!

Btw, stay on top of the latest Church Social Media news, stories, and trends at SOCIAL MEDIA and MINISTRY NEWS.

Until next time, remember, you can do all things thru Christ Jesus.

Wishing You a Very Merry Christmas & A Blessed, Happy and Prosperous New Year!

Sincerely,

Kenneth Lillard

 

 

 

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Church and Social Media 2015 Year in Review, Part 1

Social Media Icons iPhoneCan you believe the year has flown by already? Yes, it’s true! As we close out 2015, what better time than now to take a look back at the top Church and Social Media stories that have shone in the social media spotlight this year.

2015 has, definitely, been a very busy, challenging, and exciting year in church social media. Some of the major developments we’ve witnessed this year have revolved around: 1) the impact of social issues on church social media; 2) the emergence of mobile live streaming technology, especially the increasing popularity of the Periscope and Meerkat apps; and 3) the steady adaptation and implementation of the latest technology, and social media strategies and tools by today’s churches and ministries as they continue to evolve in the Digital Age.

The following compilation includes social media posts highlighting very practical information that can be readily applied by church social media practitioners. So, here are my picks for the top church social media #churchsocialmedia #chsocm stories of 2015:

Well, that concludes Part 1 of our Church Social Media 2015 Year in Review. Stay tuned for Part 2. Would love to hear your top church social media #chsocm stories of 2015. Btw, for all the latest stories and developments in the church, technology, and social media space be sure to read SOCIAL MEDIA and MINISTRY NEWS each week!

Until next time, remember, you can do all things thru Christ Jesus!

Wishing You A Happy, Healthy & Prosperous New Year!

Be Blessed Everyone,

Kenneth Lillard

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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2014 Church and Social Media Year In Review, Part 2

2014

As 2014 draws rapidly to a close, now is a great time to look back at the top Church and Social Media events and stories of the past year. Hope you had a chance to take a look at ‘2014 Church and Social Media Year in Review, Part 1,’ shared earlier on this site.

Here, in Part 2, we share more of 2014’s top #churchsocialmedia news and developments posted on social media!

Best Christian YouTube Channels – ThinkInternational

Blogging While Brown 2014/ Conference Highlights – Rothesia Stokes/ She Has Purpose

Christianity Today’s 2015 Book Awards – Christianity Today

Christian Bestsellers, December 2014 – Christian Book Expo

#ChSocM Chat/ ChurchSocMed Using social media to build church and deepen faith – Storify

#ChSocM Integrating Technology Into Life and Faith – #ChSocM Founder, Meredith Gould

#ChSocM Searching and Finding Information About Social Media for Church – #ChSocM Founder, Meredith Gould

#ChSocM Strategy and Mission in Church Social Media – #ChSocM Founder, Meredith Gould

#Ferguson and the Cross – Derwin L. Gray/ Christianity Today

Forest Hill Church on Pinterest – Forest Hill Church/ Pinterest

Great Free Resources From Top Churches – djchuang.com

Haley Veturis of Saddleback Church: Episode 85, Social Media Church Podcast – @djchuang

How We Read the Bible: Bible Gateway’s 2014 Year in Review – Biblegateway.com

Is An Online Church Really A Church? – Ed Stetzer/ Christianity Today

Joel Osteen Radio – SiriusXM subscription satellite radio service. Joel Osteen Radio on SiriusXM launched on Sept. 29, 2014.

Jason Caston: The Internet Church Campus/ Biola Digital 2014 – Jason Caston/ WebMatters

Just the Top Bible Websites, Plain and Simple – DJ Chuang/ American Bible Society

Lessons From Mars Hill Church – Gerry & Sherry Breshears/ Living Grace to the World

Maya Angelou: Award Winning Poet, Author, and Activist Dies at 86 – Huffington Post

My Proverbial Summer – Kenneth Lillard

Social Media in Youth Ministry: Tumblr – Rachel Blom/ churchleaders.com

The Potter’s House – T. D. Jakes/ thepottershouse.org

The Year In Gospel: Lecrae Dominates – Billboard

Top 300 Christian Blogs – Kent Shaffer/ Church Relevance

Top Church Tech Blogs 2014 – ChurchMag

Top Churches On Facebook – Social Media Church

Twitter and the Rise of Microprayer – Casey Cep/ The Kernel

Btw, you can stay update-to-date on all the latest news and developments in Church and Social Media by reading SOCIAL MEDIA and MINISTRY NEWS. And you can follow me at kennethlillard.com.

What were your top Church and Social Media stories of 2014?

As we count down to a brand New Year, I sincerely wish all my wonderful readers, family, and friends a Happy, Healthy, and Blessed 2015!

Until next time, remember, you can do all things thru Christ Jesus!

Be Blessed!

Kenneth Lillard

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2014 Church and Social Media Year In Review, Part 1

Best of 2014

Can you believe that 2014 is almost over? Yes, we just have a few more days until the start of a brand New Year! 2014 has flown by like a jet plane. However, it has truly been an exciting and eventful year in Church and Social Media.

FAITH BASED MEDIA 2.0 continues to tell the fascinating story of how today’s churches are using the latest technology and social media to share the Gospel. Here are some of the top #churchsocialmedia stories shared online via social media over the past twelve (12) months.

4 Ways to Make Your New Year’s Resolutions Count – Relevant

10 Apps to Grab for Your New Smartphone or Tablet – Spiritual Living, Christian Faith/ crosswalk.com

10 Best Religious Personal Finance Blogs – Shared via @ChristianPF

10 Social Media Tools That Make Everything Easier – Chris C. Ducker

11 Imaginative Ways to Use Social Media for Your Church – Steve Fogg

20 Great Ways to Use Instagram at Your Church – TheCreativePastor.com

20 Tips to Tap Into Your Divine ‘Instinct’ for Business Success: T. D. Jakes – blackenterprise.com

21 Of the Best Social Media Articles This Year – SocialMediaToday

31 Days of Thanks – Our Daily Bread

49 Church Blogging Tips – Dave Hakes/ Internet Toolbox for Churches

55 of the Best Church Website Designs – Vandelay Design

100 Years of Glorious History From the Hampton University Ministers’ Conference – Huffington Post Religion

Stay tuned for ‘2014 Church and Social Media Year In Review, Part 2’ where we’ll share more of the top #churchsocialmedia events and stories of 2014!

What were your top #churchsocialmedia stories of 2014?

Until next time, remember, you can do all things thru Christ Jesus!

Be Blessed

Kenneth Lillard

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The Best of ‘SOCIAL MEDIA and MINISTRY NEWS’ – June 2013

SOCIAL MEDIA and MINISTRY NEWS is a daily online publication which brings you the very best information from across the Internet on all the latest developments, news, and views in the social media, faith, and technology space.

It’s halfway through  Summer 2013 and we’ve pulled together the top inspirational stories, chats, podcasts, and thought-provoking opinion pieces from the June editions of SOCIAL MEDIA and MINISTRY NEWS for your information, convenience, and enjoyment.  The following represent the summer’s hottest church social media stories – the Very ‘Best of SOCIAL MEDIA and MINISTRY NEWS’ – June 2013:

Are there any June 2013 church social media articles, online chats, podcasts, or posts you would recommend to our readers?

During Summer 2013, stay on top of all the latest SOCIAL MEDIA and MINISTRY NEWS by subscribing today!

Until next time, remember, you can do all things thru Christ Jesus!

Stay Blessed,

Kenneth Lillard

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Facebook Fast For Lent?

Did you know that a number of people have chosen to fast from Facebook for Lent? That’s right! They have already gone cold turkey from the world’s largest social network in order to draw closer to God during this period of spiritual preparation for Easter. If you are reading this post on Facebook, I assume you have decided not go that route.

Many have chosen to embark on other types of fasts. In Biblical times, fasting meant subsisting on water alone, or abstaining from rich foods and eating a vegetable only diet, e.g., the Daniel fast (see Daniel 1:8-16).

However, in 2013, we Christians fast, not only from food, but also from television, video games, carbon, electronic devices, media, and social networking – including, of course, Facebook and Twitter.

There is now a vigorous debate going on as to the costs and benefits of going on a social media fast for Lent. While some have chosen to do the social media fast for several days, others have decided to unplug from the social networking grid for the whole 40 days. And many others have refused to fast at all from Facebook, or any other social network, during Lent.

The goal of any Lenten fast (or other Lenten discipline, such as repentance, prayer, study, works of love) is to give up something we’ve become accustomed to, in order to remind ourselves of how we should be dependent on God. “Man does not live by bread alone.” Dueteronomy 8:3.

Believe it or not, some spend more time in the digital world than in the real world! Man does not live by Facebook alone, either. So, here are some of the pros and cons of going on a social networking fast for Lent.

Benefits of unplugging from the social networking grid:

  • You’re not being constantly distracted from focusing on God by a steady barrage of status updates, tweets, likes, RT’s, DM’s, etc.
  • You can get outside more – breathe fresh air and sunshine.
  • Pace of life slows down – you don’t feel so hurried or rushed all the time. Enables you to better focus on Jesus and his meaning in your life.
  • Reclaim valuable time from continual social networking.
  • Sharing everything is not always such a good thing.
  • Decreases tendencies to narcissism and selfishness.
  • Reconnect face-to-face with family, friends, loved-ones, and neighbors.
  • More time available for prayer.
  • More quiet time to meditate on the Word of God.
  • Beneficial to one’s spiritual and relational health.
  • More time to appreciate the hope of God whose “steadfast love endures forever”!

Disadvantages of going on a social media fast:

  • Social media helps you to see and appreciate the hand of God at work in the world.
  • FB helps to deepen community by connecting you to those you care about, as well as others around the globe.
  • Social media helps you to minister, care for, and love your neighbors in  a broader spectrum of ways.
  • Social media is not a distraction from God, but rather reminds you of how truly awesome He is, giving you new reasons to appreciate Him even more.
  • Helps one to grow and develop spiritually, personally and professionally.
  • Social media helps to enrich one’s life through exposure to new knowledge, ideas, and friendships.
  • Social media provides more opportunities to share the Gospel, as well as, serve and minister to others, both locally and globally.

While the debate continues, the important thing to remember during Lent is to stay plugged in to God, drawing closer to Him, and seeking to deepen an understanding  of His purposes in our lives. This can be done whether we’re on Facebook or totally unplugged from the social networking grid!

The following are some reflections on this debate:

How to Give Up Facebook for Lent and Keep Your Friends – CNET

Why I’m Fasting From Facebook This Lent – Becky Garrison

Why I’m Not Giving Up Facebook For Lent – Christ and Pop Culture

Four Lessons From My Lenten Social Media Fast – Robert Talbert

Until next time, remember, you can do all things through Christ Jesus!

Be Blessed,

Kenneth Lillard

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Churches Use Social Media in Disaster Relief #HurricaneSandy

 

Hurricane Sandy wreaked havoc across the Jersey Shore, NY, and Long Island a couple of weeks ago. People immediately jumped on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube to post and share their stories, images, and videos of the super storm.

Social media sites provided platforms for people around the tri-state area to map the flooding from Hurricane Sandy, and of course, help news organizations cover the crisis. Many took to social media to connect, share and collaborate around core needs, even as the region’s own infrastructure  struggled or totally failed. Local people even posted maps of open gas stations!

While NYC has a sophisticated digital initiative, NYC Digital, that sprang into action, local churches also used the Internet and social media to help respond to the disaster. Oasis Church in Springfield, NJ has been using the Internet to respond to the super storm,  including attracting hundreds of volunteers from across the country to help make the Thanksgiving holiday season a little brighter for those affected by the devastation.  And even though the megastorm has passed, many still need assistance, and much recovery work remains to be done.

Here are 10 ways churches can use social media to assist during disasters:

  • Use FB and Twitter as an early warning system for members and the community-at-large. Twitter, often, comes out with the news  before the news organizations.
  • Share news updates, storm experiences, prayer requests, and calls for assistance.
  • Use FB and Twitter to let people know how to prepare, what’s coming, and where to get help.
  • Provide links to official disaster response organizations like FEMA, NVOAD, local police and fire departments, hospitals, Red Cross, Salvation Army, etc.
  • Create bulletin boards, using #hashtags on Twitter linked to FB, to post the latest news, injury reports, power outages, evacuations, dangerous situations, damage reports of churches and elsewhere in the community, relief resources, etc.
  • Prepare a crisis plan/ phone tree. (Btw, social media is actually the new phone tree tool.) Remind members to check on each other and those in the community, especially the vulnerable and elderly.
  • Use FB and Twitter to organize, mobilize, and publicize relief and recovery efforts.
  • Provide prayer and pastoral care for those whose lives have been impacted by the disaster.
  • Establish relationships and digital connections with relief organizations before the disaster strikes.
  • Prepare your plan for the next disaster now, and begin communicating it ASAP!

For more information on social media response to disasters see the following links:

72 Hour Lutheran – TX-LA Gulf Coast Synod Disaster Preparations and Response

Church Media: Being Ready In and Out of Season – Church Mag

Hurricane Sandy Resources: How You Can Volunteer and Donate – NJ.com

Instagram Users Share 10 Hurricane Sandy Photos Per Second – Mashable

Oasis Church Uses Web to Recruit Hundreds of Volunteers for Hurricane Sandy Aid– NJ.com

Recovers.org – Community software that helps organize volunteers, donations, and information during disaster situations

Texting Connects Families During Disaster – Orlando Sentinel

Social Media Aids Hurricane Sandy Cleanup on Staten Island – silive.com

Social Media’s Crucial Role in Disaster Relief Efforts – Guardian.co.uk

Social Media Follow Hurricane Sandy’s Destructive Path Up the East Coast – USA Today

Social Media Tools For Disaster Planning and Communications (Twitter Chat) – Church Social Media Blog #Chsocm

What Was Novel About Social Media During Hurricane Sandy? – Patrick Meier, iRevolution 

How is your church/ministry preparing for the next disaster? How is digital social media included in your strategy?

Until next time, remember, you can do all things thru Christ Jesus!

Stay Blessed,

Kenneth Lillard

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