Access to Religion Increases with Growth of Online Resources

Roslyn Summerville, Public Relations Editor

The Bible is the best-selling collection of sacred writings for the Christian religion. It has weathered many years in a physical format, but now, the Bible can be found at the touch of a button as an app for smartphones.

The growth of technology and social media websites has created a whole other avenue for religion to reach more people.

Recently, the pope has been sending out tweets, and also, the Dalai Lama has been sending out his own teachings via the Internet.

Br. Armand Alcazar, FSC, Ph.D., professor of theology, believes that religion isn’t making itself more technologically advanced; it’s just doing what it has to do to reach out to more people.

“If the population moves online, then that’s also where religion should move. We go where people are,” Br. Armand said.

Br. Armand said that religion moving to the Internet is a good thing, just for the fact that more people are able to get involved. On the other hand, there’s something that is hard to translate from online text rather than face- to-face.

“I can give as much information, maybe more online,” Br. Armand said, “but, I find that hearts are more likely to be touched by other hearts, faces and human contact than by print, cursors and monitors.” Sean Cleary, a sophomore biology major and peer minister, explained that sometimes he attends his church back home through the Internet.

“Technology is cool and useful, but I don’t think it’s the same as being at Mass with a bunch of people all participating together,” Cleary said. “It’s convenient for people who can’t get to church physically, but viewing church online lacks a sense of community.”

Cleary also said that the steps churches are making toward incorporating technology such as microphones and televisions are very good. It makes it easier for everyone at Mass to hear and see better than without them.

A popular Bible app worth checking out, particularly for first-time users, is ‘Bible’ by LifeChurch.tv. A less traditional one would be ‘Bible Verses Free’ by Webworks.

Roslyn Summerville

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