Digital Discipleship: Transforming Ministry Through Technology

Posts tagged ‘God’

Words of Wisdom and Welcome!

Bishop of Orlando, Florida

Bishop John Noonan

On Tuesday, at INTERACTIVE CONNECTIONS, we were welcomed by Bishop John Noonan to the Diocese of Orlando, with these wonderful welcoming words:

Welcome to the Third Interactive Connections Conference!  I am grateful for the presence of pilgrims such as yourselves in our Diocese of Orlando, especially when you graciously visit to become more skilled and enlightened ministers of the Gospel. I understand some of you hail from throughout the United States, including our neighbors in the Diocese of St. Petersburg, Florida.  Some of you are visiting from Japan, and my own native Ireland. I pray you find the Spirit of the Lord upon you throughout your learning and sharing experiences during the Conference.

Pope Benedict XVI said in his homily for the Solemnity of Mary, the Mother of God, “I would like to underline the fact that, in the face of the shadows that obscure the horizon of today’s world, to assume responsibility for educating young people in knowledge of the truth, in fundamental values and virtues, is to look to the future with hope. And in this commitment to a holistic education, formation in justice and peace has a place.”

Today, you have an extraordinary opportunity to explore the tools of technology as wondrous gifts of the Lord to form our young people with a message of justice and peace.  Our young people are growing up in a world that has become smaller, where contacts between each other and different cultures and traditions are constant.  As Pope Benedict also said, “For them, now more than ever, it is indispensable to learn the importance and the art of peaceful coexistence, mutual respect, dialogue and understanding.”

In a young person’s world where technology is ever present, I encourage you to spread the Good News through its use.  Bring them a message of justice and peace.  Show them how this message can be communicated and how these tools, which are God-given, can also be sacred vehicles to bring about joy and good will and alleviate pain and suffering. Integrate grace and culture, technology and media.

Technology cannot replace the presence of each other with each other.  It cannot offer the feel of a person’s hand upon yours; nor strength of arms to hold you; nor the widening of our faces into a smile as you reach out to greet another.  When we use technology to glorify the Lord, it blossoms relationship and draws us closer still to our God.

My Sisters and Brothers in Christ, may we at all times bless the Lord God, and ask Him to make all our paths straight and to grant success to all our endeavors and plans.

Thank you Bishop Noonan for welcoming us to your diocese!  We are becoming Digital Disciples!

Technology Prayers

I’m facilitating the Summer Institute for Technology and Ministry this summer in the St. Petersburg Diocese.  We’re having a wonderful time learning the culture and language of the ever evolving Digital World that surrounds us.

Just wanted to share a couple of the prayers that we have used in our sessions.

The Technology Canticle

We praise You, Lord, for all Your digital world,

especially for Brother Blog,

who is the gift through whom You give us conversation.

And he is beautiful and radiant with great splendor,

of You Most High, he bears your likeness.

We praise You, Lord, for Twitter,

in the heavens you have made the tweet short, quick, and easy.

We praise You, Lord, for Brothers LinkedIn and Flickr,

professional and a sea of networks,

by which You cherish the photos of what you have gifted us with.

We praise You, Lord, for Sister Facebook,

filled with family and friends, news, and connections all across the globe.

We praise You, Lord, for Sister Earth,

who sustains us

with her fruits, colored flowers, and herbs.

Caroline Cerveny, SSJ-TOSF created this contemporary take on St. Francis’ well known prayer, Canticle of the Creatures

Blessing of our Cell Phones

Blessed are You, eternal God,

King of the universe:

You have called us in Jesus to be Your beloved people,

living pure and blameless lives in Your sight.

Bless + this cell phone.

Let your Spirit guide our words, texts, photos and videos

so that the light of Christ may shine before all

and lead all who receive them to give You praise.

May our words, texts, photos and videos be filled with the spirit of love,

with the obedience of faith,

and the strength of hope.

Make our lives be joyful in Your service,

and bring those we connect with closer to You.

Father all-holy,

we praise Your Name,

and ask this blessing through Christ our Lord.

Amen.

This prayer is adapted from the Family Blessing. 

Prayer to St. Francis de Sales Patron Saint of Journalists

Most loving and lovable Saint Francis de Sales,

you preached to thousands with the pen,

introducing them to “the devout life.”

You wrote sublimely about God’s love

and made countless converts by your Christlike kindness.

Make writers realize the power of the Press

and inspire them with your zeal for spreading truth.

Help them to write honestly no matter what the subject,

so that they will really contribute to bringing about

God’s kingdom. Amen.

Copyright ©2011 Caroline Cerveny

A Spiritual Online Experience

Lent is this wonderful time of remembering Jesus’ journey to the Cross and then celebrating his Resurrection.  If you have journeyed to Jerusalem and walked the streets as Jesus walked the streets on this way to the Cross, this journey is a reminder of our spiritual journey.  As the path is walked, it helps us see our lives in the context of a path, a pilgrimage.

Spiritual journeys are now possible in a virtual format!   Recently, a friend shared with me the online Labyrinth that was developed by the people at PROOSTinspiring resources that fuel faith of the United KingdomLabyrinth

Here is the introduction to the online labyrinth:

Labyrinth Explanation

Click on the image or go to: http://www.labyrinth.org.uk/onlinelabyrinthpage1.html.

I would encourage you to find a moment in your day, when you have 40 minutes for a quiet, safe place for the intuitive, symbolic mind to be present to your path, your pilgrimage.

Here are some of the responses from the Visitor’s Book by people who have walked the Labyrinth:

Beautiful. I feel I’ve been somewhere… touched the robe of Christ and been recognized!

A completely uplifting and spiritual experience – this is what I came for.

Went to observe – stayed to participate. An amazing journey – no idea how long it took – a lifetime perhaps? Not over yet! Strong sense of journeying with the others in the Labyrinth. A good walk! Thank you for the stillness – for the experience of you and me. Truly God is here.

This magical experience made me totally change the way I will now look at life.

It’s amazing! I felt I was with God for the first time ever. It’s very thought-provoking and I will try to use this experience to change and improve my life.

A peaceful and deep experience in such an amazing setting. The world moved silently by as I explored my inner world – my own unique journey.

If history says I have helped one person to embrace God as you’ve helped me here, I’ll be glad.

Thanks, this has helped me to realize the stresses and strains of work and life – things that seem to surround and engulf me too much.

Words cannot describe my encounter with God through this.

One of the most meaningful experiences of my life. Thank you. Keep on.

Thank you all for providing an appropriate as well as creative ritual for others and myself to commune with God… I was given much insight and freed from much.

May you enjoy a quiet moment with the Lord!

Copyright ©2011 Caroline Cerveny

The Advent Season – Week 4

I am always amazed at how quickly weeks pass!  Here we are, in the 4th week of Advent.  And I trust that you continue to be inspired by the reflections, music, and PowerPoint presentations that are available on the Internet.  More importantly, these are often projects that can be created by your students or yourselves.  Imagine the pride felt when one of these projects is available to share with members of their parish and families.

Fourth Sunday of Advent ReadingsDecember 19th


Music

Celebrating Christmas


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