We are just a couple of days from March first as I write my monthly article on what to post on social media.
We are in the Lenten season and I've already written a couple of blogs for what to post under a Lenten theme, but because we have such a rich faith with a liturgical year to follow there's more to share.
As always if you visit CatholicCulture.org it provides a fertile ground of content to share each month. There is always the universal church monthly devotion to share and I usually design a cover photo to reflect the devotion and our devotion for March is St. Joseph. In addition to the universal church devotion Pope Francis offers a prayer intention every month and this month's is Formation in Spiritual Discernment.
The next piece of content always sparks the most engagement on social media and it is the feast days of the saints. There are only six saints this month: (3) Katharine Drexel, (7) Perpetua and Felicity, (8) John of God, (9) Frances of Rome and (17) Patrick. For most of us the most celebrated Saint is Patrick, but amidst the shenanigans associated with this saint's feast day remember it's true meaning. One aspect to share is that St. Patrick was a survivor of human trafficking to bring a more contemporary meaning to his life. Also, because we are in the middle of the Lent St. Katharine Drexel gets lost in the shuffle of prayer, sacrifice and service offered during this reflective time. Check out this Saint's website and share it with your followers. The legacy and work of St. Katharine endures through the order she established, Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament who help under served populations and they could benefit from your prayers and donations on her feast day. We have one solemnity for Joseph the husband of Mary to celebrate this month and it is on the 19th. Be sure to capture a picture of the statue of Joseph in your church to be used for any posts related to celebrating this beloved saint.
If you follow my patented "5 Things Every Parish Should Post" strategy you know it also calls for you to share parish behind the scenes and community life. Wow! It should be "easy-peasy" this month to capture content under these themes as we are in the Lenten Season. Holy week, March 25 - March 31 will provide many opportunities for you to share how the parish prepares for Palm Sunday, Chrism Mass, Holy Thursday, Good Friday and the welcoming of the new Catholics into your communities at the Easter Vigil.
The other important element the strategy calls for is to share things from the Pope, Pastor, Priests and Deacons. So let's start with the Holy Father, there is a video that you can share explaining the Pope's intention in his own words with subtitles. I was also approached by a company to share the wonderful work that they are doing to share a daily inspirational message from the Holy Father and the website is called the message of the day, awesome! In terms of your pastor and associate priests look for ways to share their unique voice in your social media posts. One way that I've been sharing is to simply lift text from the Gospel they will read and share it as a post or share 3 - 5 things they can encourage members to do each week to more fully live the Gospel.
If your parish livestreams the mass you can share the homily as a post. You could also lift a quote from the homily and share it as a post like the one above, just take the picture of the book out and put a picture of the pastor, associate priest or deacon in.
Other points to remember have to do with what's going on in the world and two things that can be thematic for your planning are Daylight Savings time on the 11th signaling we are moving closer to the light of Christ and the Easter promise. The other is the First Day of Spring on the 20th can be used to promote an element of the Pope's Laudato Si.
Last, but certainly not least one of the largest gatherings of Catholics every year happens in March! The Los Angeles Archdiocese draws upwards of 30-thousand from all over the world to learn, celebrate and just be Catholic at the Religious Education Congress #RECongress2018. I will be master of ceremonies for a couple of sessions, notably on social media so if you are interested in meeting the woman behind these post in person let me know in the comments!
If you still struggle with my advice to post 30 days in advance or even two weeks you will love my Church Social Tips Facebook Live's. Every Friday at Noon alternating between the coast time zones I share 6 tips in 7 - 10 minutes for what to post in the week ahead here's a link to last week.
That's all for now hope Lent is serving to be a time of reflection and renewal for you that blossoms into a new you on Easter Sunday.