Even before Elder Ballard gave his talk called “Using New Media to Support the Work of the Church” to the graduates at BYU Hawaii back in December 2007, I was involved in On-line discussions about the LDS Church and some of the core doctrinal beliefs we have. My friend Kathryn, LDS Nana, was the one who persuaded me to get involved and “speak out” to teach correctly so that “others would not have a chance to define our beliefs for us.”
My first experience with On-Line discussion came in a forum called On-Faith with Michael Otterson. On-faith discussions are facilitated though the Washington Post, so needless to say it was like being thrown to the wolves! (I wouldn’t suggest it if you are new to On-Line conversations!)
My next experience with the Internet was through a website called Hubpages. It was at Hubpages that I became In The Doghouse and started writing small articles on several different subjects. At the time Kathryn and I were the only ones there who published positive articles about the LDS Church. Hubpages has been a great place to learn about Internet etiquette and community involvement. To date I have published 104 Hubs with 64 of them being directly related to the Church.
Sometime after my adventure started at Hubpages, I decided to write some of my more personal observations and feelings I have about LDS principles and doctrine in a different avenue, and that was the beginning of this BLOG. I have really been having the most fun writing here, in my own little corner of the Blogosphere. Besides writing on this BLOG I have actively searched for other LDS Blogs, and have been really inspired by reading the insights that these great LDS Bloggers share On-line.
My most recent publication on Hubpages is a Hub called, LDS Bloggers. It is simply an article sharing a list of my favorite LDS Blogs. Perhaps you might be interested in seeing what places I haunt on the Blogosphere... if so go and check this link for more information!
I give a big thank you to all LDS Bloggers who willingly share their insights and observations about the LDS Church in a positive way to the world, and encourage others to do the same.
From the words of Elder Ballard:
“Now, to you who are graduating today and all other faithful members of the Church, as you graduate from this wonderful university, may I ask that you join the conversation by participating on the Internet, particularly the New Media, to share the gospel and to explain in simple, clear terms the message of the Restoration. Most of you already know that if you have access to the Internet you can start a blog in minutes and begin sharing what you know to be true. You can download videos from Church and other appropriate sites, including Newsroom at LDS.org, and send them to your friends. You can write to media sites on the Internet that report on the Church, and voice your views as to the accuracy of the reports. This, of course, requires that you, all members of the Church, understand the basic, fundamental principles of the gospel.
We are living in a world saturated with all kinds of voices. Perhaps now, more than ever, we have a major responsibility as Latter-day Saints to define ourselves, instead of letting others define us. Far too many people have a poor understanding of the Church because most of the information they hear about us is from news media reports that are often driven by controversies. Too much attention to controversy has a negative impact on peoples’ perceptions of what the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints really is.”
If you are not quite ready to take this challenge yet, there is still a great work you can do...may I suggest that when you read information On-line that is “of good report” take time to add a “second witness” to the truth being shared by way of a comment. It will encourage those who are trying to share, and also add your testimony to that which has been given.
Perhaps together we can really make a difference one reader at a time.