The Diocese of Fort Worth, recovering from the troubles with former leaders who tried to break from The Episcopal Church, has launched an ambitious strategy for reconnecting with each other and the wider church. Using Twitter,™ Facebook,™ and other forms of electronic communication. In answer to a question about The Episcopal Insider:
Katie Sherrod writes:
It is part of our diocesan communications plan. The diocesan communication staff [that would be me and our web master Elinor Normand] puts out an e-newsletter called The Circuit Rider with general news every other month and the diocesan staff, which is essentially Demi Prentiss, puts out The Good News every month with items from the diocesan office that will be helpful to rectors, senior wardens, and other diocesan leaders. Both are then posted on our diocesan web site. “The Episcopal Insider” is prepared by Thomas Squiers, our Social Media Coordinator, who manages our Facebook and Twitter presence. It is put together using Paper Li.
I produce videos that we post on YouTube and Vimeo and put on our diocesan website. We post links to the videos on Facebook™ and Twitter.™ We also send out email blasts to all who sign up for news updates from the diocese. We can’t afford to put out a print newspaper so it is pretty bare bones because we are operating with a tiny staff and a part time bishop. All these newsletters are new — we’ve only had one edition each of
of the e-newsletters. Because not all our folks are online, we are requesting that volunteers at each parish take on the ministry of printing out the newsletters and getting them to those who are not computer savvy or who prefer to get a printed copy. We use Facebook™ and Twitter™ to point folks to the newsletters and the website.
Our biggest challenge remains that of finding Episcopalians. [Former Bishop] Iker still has possession of the diocesan data bases, so we have had to rebuild mailing lists from scratch.
Through it all, our basic message remains constant —
“All are welcome in this place.”