Social media are electronic communication tools where online communities are created by the users for information sharing, gathering ideas and personal messaging. We have a wide range of social media sites that serve different purposes. The notable ones are Facebook, WhatsApp and Twitter. The recent advancements in information technology have impacted heavily on all forms of communication in an effort to deliver quality information in real-time unlike before. Organizations are investing heavily in social media to gain a competitive advantage and acquire the large pool of online customers. Christian denominations have not been left behind in the race to attain digital followers.
Social media as an interactive tool has been used in churches around the globe to reach out to people who never go to church. Christian content is available in several formats that include audio, video and blogs for those willing to access them on social media websites. Like in the ancient days when Jesus encouraged his disciples to go forth and spread the word, social media experts have shown that transfer of digital content is the easiest way to spread the word of God. Online communities have been created where all people can access the Gospel through social media websites.
Social media websites, create awareness and increases the number of people going to church. Facebook as a tool of communication enables creation of pages where people are requested to like the pages and encourage their friends follow suit. This is because the high number of likes on the page has an influence on the search results. Hence, when people move to new residential places, people they use social media communities to search for a new church.
Through this, they are more likely to settle on the church with a large following and likes on social media.
The use of Twitter in populating church functions has been effective as it has created more room for pastoral information and interaction. Twitter has enabled the creation of hash-tags on sermons allowing both members and non members to view the content. Numerous pastors have taken up blogging as a way of preparing members of the church on the next sermon and address issues not in the sermon as well as sharing devotional thoughts. As such, blogging has made pastors to become better preachers as it gives them room to refine their thoughts and focus on the content clarity.
Therefore, the impact of social media on churches is not going to stop very soon. It is changing the way business has been done before, but in a more positive enhancing the delivery of the message, clarity and convenience.
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