As a young child, I remember my grandfather having a truck with two gas caps on it. I always wondered why this was so. Did the truck need a second fluid to run, was there something about the truck that made it special, or did it just need extra gas to function? Puzzled after investigating this many times, I asked my Dad about my grandfather’s truck.
He told me how in 1973, gasoline supplies ran low and people began to panic about buying gas. Motorists had to wait hours in line just to get a few gallons for their car. At the time, we lived in the farmlands of New Hampshire and had to drive long distances just to get to the market. Another gas shortage happened in 1979. Both these situations compelled my family to be more prepared. My grandfather put two gas tanks in his car and my father began driving diesel cars, which had better gas mileage. This taught me a great lesson about the importance of preparing for the future. When technology began to make its way into our classrooms, work, and homes, I learned all about the possibilities it could offer.
While some may say too much technology is limiting social interactions among people and that the art of conversation is being lost to generations who only know how to communicate via texts or through social media, I see technology as something positive. It is a forum, which if used properly and in moderation, can bring people closer together rather than drive them further apart. This became clear to me during the shutdown mandates because of COVID-19.
When the coronavirus closed our churches, many of us used technology to ensure the virus did not shut down our spirituality. Churches live-streamed Masses, faith formation classes were held virtually online, as were spiritual retreats, workshops, and so much more. Access to resources that could enhance our faith experiences is as easy as a click away. At one point here in the Diocese of Norwich, there was more going on in a week virtually than we could offer locally.
Jesus was a rabbi and a teacher. He expected that all his followers would be open to learning and deepening their faith through whatever means were available to them. Through the creative genius of many people utilizing their God-given gifts, we have the technology to unite people across continents and throughout the world. As we return to worship services in our church buildings, let us be open to new avenues of enhancing our faith journey through technology. Take time to investigate ways to help your Catholic faith grow through the many spiritual resources available on the web, Facebook, Zoom, webinars, or other avenues. You can have daily Scripture readings emailed to your cell phone, as well as stories about the Saint of the Day, inspiring meditations, and online retreats. There is truly something for everyone!
By Liza Roach, Youth and Youth Adult Minister