There's much justified outrage about Facebook's new gender definitions - all 56 of them. For this social network to consult the LBGT community to help create these imaginary, sordid compartments for people - and to pretend it's all normal - is a disgusting new facet of an already far left (to the point of falling over the proverbial cliff) leaning company. The reactions have been swift and decisive. Many good, Christian people are once again discerning whether or not to stay with Facebook.
On the surface, the decision seems rather obvious. After all, Facebook is not a necessity. Unlike utilities, corporations, food suppliers, and a myriad of other necessary businesses, Facebook is optional entertainment. Right? It may be an entertaining method of networking and socializing, but it's not vital to our lives. I find myself in a quandary, however, about leaving. After much discussion - on Facebook, of course - I've come to conclusion that I will remain. Here's why:
1). The way I see it, sometimes when on Facebook or in the comboxes, we're in the gutter with the poor, hopeless sinners. We minister to them by sharing the Gospel. If we don't go where they are, how would we ever encounter them IRL (in real life)? I see Facebook, if used properly, as a powerful tool for evangelization.
2). I won't leave, because by remaining I may have the opportunity to sustain others, who have similar missions. The Gospel message is validated, in the minds of others, the more it is shared. The Word of God becomes more widespread the more of us who continue to share it. There's too much work to be done and electronic media has been encouraged by the Holy Father.
3.) I've personally seen much good come out of dabbling in Facebook ministry - both in strengthening faith and in promoting a Culture of Life. With our help, people are getting braver about posting things they were formerly unwilling to share. I've seen the fruit of this with people I know in real life, just this week. We are the tide and it's turning.
4.) Sometimes it's difficult to be out in the evangelizing trenches - even in cyberspace. Sharing the burden with like-minded souls, eases the strain a bit. When I begin to feel alone in a world run amok, I find my compatriots to be a soothing balm of faith. It helps me to realize that I am a part of the Church Militant, battling for the glory of God.
5.) We have the option of using Facebook to our own purposes. With a fully formed conscience and purity of objective, we are able to discard the objectionable and use the good to the advantage of Faith. One thing I plan to do is to cut down on the entertainment aspect of Facebook - especially for Lent.
I realize this is a very personal decision and certainly don't begrudge those who have come to a different conclusion. These five points simply represent my own decision-making process - discerning and praying to make the right decision for me. We all have different callings and differing talents to share. If some of my friends make a different decision, I will wish them well, pray for them, and miss our collaboration. Onward Christian Soldiers, whatever path you choose!
Case in point regarding #4. Just as some discussions over this post were heating up, one of my friends posted this:
"I will go anywhere and do anything in order to communicate the love of Jesus to those who do not know Him or have forgotten Him."-- St. Frances Xavier Cabrini