It’s been nearly eight months since I started up this new blog on WordPress. During that time, I’ve written about sixty posts. It’s hard to know what will catch people’s attention, and because I get very few comments, I’m not always sure what speaks to people and what doesn’t. But one of the most interesting things that has happened is with regard to a post I wrote rather early on, last September, called “Which Team Are You On?” (click to have a look). It was a post put up rather hastily, based on a homily that I’d preached that day, in which I used talk of “Team Edward” and “Team Jacob” as a means of illustrating a point about that day’s readings. To date, it’s the most read post on my blog, with visits to that page nearly every day! I don’t know if the people that end up there leave disappointed, but it’s got me thinking about something I already think a lot about–how to get the message of Jesus out to people who wouldn’t normally hear it, or be receptive to it. I’m willing to get on the Team Edward or Team Jacob bandwagon, if that’s what it takes!
This has got me thinking that somehow engaging “trending” topics on Christian blogs might be a more effective means of evangelization than a lot of the myopic infighting which takes place via many blogs. Sure, many of those blogs get lots of hits, but mainly those are from people who want to get into the fight! And perhaps we should be thankful that those who don’t normally hear the message of Jesus don’t end up there, because they might get a poor representation of what the message of Jesus is really about. But I digress . . .
I’m starting to think about how such a discovery might lead to a more effective strategy for reaching, for want of a better word, the “unchurched.” What other topics might garner such traffic from a more “non-religious” crowd? Stay tuned, as soon I might try out some different strategies, to see how they pan out (sifting for gold!). And I know I said I don’t get many comments, but I would welcome comments, e-mails or feedback from anyone who knows of such strategies that are working, or may have some ideas about what might work.
I’m becoming increasingly convinced that the future of the Church lies in evangelization, which will require us to go in new and creative directions (and perhaps some arm-twisting for us often reticent Catholics), so that we can be sure we’re not just preaching to the choir, but also to those who belong to other “teams.”