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The debate on the positive versus negative impacts of social media networking continues, this time around the Catholic Church has waded in.
Me? In addition to having friends in the real world, I find such social media as Twitter, Facebook and my blog an interesting way to interact with new people across all social strata, age groups and geographic locations. Indeed, I think it's the technological equivalent of Walt Disney's philosophy: It's A Small World, After All. (I stress philosophy and not that annoying theme park song)
Couldn't watch it all, could you? But I digress...
I thought the Catholic Church ran out of feet to stand on a long time ago. But apparently it has as many feet as a centipede because it has just stuck another one in it's mouth. Westminster Archbishop Vincent Nichols, the top guy of all Catholics in England and Wales, was quoted last week as saying he "is worried that teenagers are developing "transient" relationships on the internet and he warns the collapse of the friendships could leave young people feeling suicidal".
The Archbishop (Why do they call them that? To my lapsed-Catholic sensibilities it sounds like something not far from arch-villain"!) went on to say: "I think there's a worry that an excessive use, or an almost exclusive use of text and emails means that as a society we're losing some of the ability to build interpersonal communication that's necessary for living together and building a community."
This from a leader of an outfit that scarred me for life with it's Baltimore Catechism of the 50s that taught me - complete with idiotic "artist renderings" that prayer was a phone call to God.
If you ask me, the Catholic Church, who has turned away more worshippers than it has attracted, should instead of dissing the technology be embracing it. Why not use the technology to their benefit to attract young people to the church.
Of course they may have to change their ideas on birth control, celibate priests and gay marriage first.