Building Community… one tweet at a time


Just a year ago, I received a call:  “Can we ramp up a program to help our deacons broaden their evangelization outreach?” It was a great question… one that I pondered, prayed upon and researched for several days. In the end, it occured to me that Twitter, of all the social media possibilities, offered a great potential.

Why? I know, most people are Facebook or Instagram stalwarts. Somehow, the simplicityBW_deaconspeaking
and brevity of Twitter appealed to me. And it offered a perk (at no cost), TweetDeck, a platform for providing a single twitter account for an entire organization to use. Hmmm… now that had potential among 75 active permanent deacons in our diocese!

Sparing you the back story, TweetDeck now embraces @deaconspeaking. That’s a twitter account that, “is the official Twitter Team account of the Deacon Community, Diocese of Syracuse, New York. Our goal is to evangelize to all people.” We don’t have many followers, yet, but we’re working on it. How?

PFrancis_RequoteFirst, deacons are signing on as members of the TweetDeck Team. Secondly, we’re learning how to leverage popular tweets. Pope Francis is a great example! He usually receives 20-30 thousand likes on each tweet. Well, we broaden his message by drilling down into scripture.

This requote/retweet of the Pontiff’s message on Friday in the 5th Week of Lent is a good example. We simply reflected back to the original Gospel passage that his incredible tweet is based upon. It provides a vehicle for a meaningful message on our part as a deacon community, but more importantly, it grounds Pope Francis’ message in the scripture that our parishioners encountered on Ash Wednesday.

It’s a start. To date, six of us are on the team. We are tweeting daily (as many times as we can) and hopefully reaching out to our parishioners who are on Twitter. As our Strategic Plan states, “The new @deaconspeaking TweetDeck Team account is the latest addition to diocesan efforts to build an on-going evangelization presence via social media.”

Keep us in your prayers! (Better yet, follow us on Twitter at @deacondspeaking.)

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