More “new media” in the Catholic community

Speaking of “new media,” the editor of The Catholic Key in Kansas City, Mo., Jack Smith, has a new post on the paper’s blog titled “Facebook Bishops” about bishops who either have sites on the popular social network or have fan clubs set up by other Facebook members.

He notes that his two local prelates, Bishop Robert W. Finn of K.C.-St. Joe, and Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann of Kansas City, Kan., have fan clubs on Facebook. He also points out that a whole lot of bishops may not even know they have their own Facebook fan clubs. (I discovered while putting together this post that there’s a relatively new “Goodbye Archbishop Burke” fan club established after the St. Louis prelate was appointed to a high Vatican position in June, and I also saw a fan club for Archbishop Wilton D. Gregory of Atlanta. I also remember seeing a fan club for Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo of Galveston-Houston when he was elevated to the College of Cardinals last November.)

I suppose it would be appropriate now to shamelessly plug the Catholic News Service Facebook page established last year. We’re planning on beefing it up in the coming months — right now it only has a couple RSS feeds from CNS.

Also on the new media front, Bishop William F. Murphy of Rockville Centre, N.Y., now has a podcast version of a letter he sent last week to the Bush administration and members of Congress on the economic crisis besetting the nation this fall. (Bishop Murphy is chairman of the U.S. bishops’ Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development.) In the podcast he explains why the bishops get involved in such issues and reads the letter sent to the White House and to Capitol Hill. His is one of several dioceses and other Catholic agencies posting material to iTunes, the popular site for iPod owners to download a wide variety of paid and free content for listening or viewing.

And since we’re talking here about Facebook and the bishops, we’d be remiss if we didn’t remind readers that the bishops are using Facebook and other tools to promote their “Faithful Citizenship” election guide.

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