The Perils of Catholic Conversation on Social Media James Martin

James Martin, Jesuit priest, culture editor of America magazine and author of “Between Heaven and Mirth: Why Joy, Humor, and Laughter are at the Heart of the Spiritual Life,” writes a timely article on the perils and state of Catholic conversation on social media platforms in America Magazine. 
 This is his opening paragraph:

 "I wonder if you can say anything about the Catholic faith without people taking offense.  No matter how benign, no comment on the web about Catholicism goes unchallenged.  That goes for blogs, Facebook, Twitter, You Tube and pretty much everything else.  

Moreover, the idea of trying to understand a person by reading carefully what they're actually saying, or giving them the benefit of the doubt, is fading quickly from Catholic discourse.  No matter what you write, there are Catholics ready to take immediate offense, to explode in righteous anger, to threaten to report you to the proper authorities or, most of all, to correct.  

The most common responses are these five: 1.) Your soul is in mortal danger.  2.) You’re uneducated and need to be schooled. 3.) I hate the church and so I hate you.  4.) You’re an unthinking tool of the Vatican.  5.) You’re disobedient and must be reported. 
Fr Martin goes on :
" Here is a not-so-farfetched exchange, based on some very, very real experiences.  Believe me, it would be hard to make this stuff up........."

There will be many who can relate to this article and Fr. Martin writes well, but it should not deflect from the fact that for some people on the receiving end , it has become a serious problem.

What can be done about virulent "thought police" ?  
What is the solution?  

Enhanced by Zemanta

No comments: