My Catechism Day by Day
E-mail service will send daily doses of doctrine
Matt Warner is a digital dad with a mission to share and educate others about the ups and downs of social media. He is head of FlockNote, a social media service that helps parishes and dioceses communicate with their communities. In this Year of Faith, his group is now offering subscribers an easy way (free!) to read the Catechism of the Catholic Church in daily doses delivered by e-mail, so they go through the whole book in a year.
Fathers for Good spoke to Warner about his innovative plan.
FFG: Why daily feeds of the Catechism of the Catholic Church?
Matt Warner: FlockNote already does the daily Mass readings sent to you by e-mail. And since Pope Benedict XVI asked us to study the Catechism for the Year of Faith, we thought it would be really appropriate. And a guy named Jeffrey Pinyan just recently made available a great Catechism search tool online that also has an API (a fancy way for other software like Flocknote to work directly with his software/content). So the opportunity just kind of presented itself.
And then, people like to consume information in small, digestible bites. And the reason I think so many people never end up reading the whole Catechism is because it's a fairly daunting task to take on all at once. So we make it easy. You get a small amount of it e-mailed to you each day that you can read in 5-10 minutes. Do that little bit each day, and after the Year of Faith, you'll have read the entire Catechism of the Catholic Church.
FFG: What purpose do you hope to serve?
Warner: Personally, I’ve always wanted to read through the Catechism in a more systematic way, and this was a great opportunity to do it! And, in the process, it looks like we’ll be bringing a lot of other folks along, too! We currently have over 20,000 people signed up and have been adding about 1,000 new people per day. So our purpose was just to inspire people to learn more about their faith for the Year of Faith, to do so ourselves, and to bring as many people along with us as possible.
FFG: How do you break the Catechism into 365 pieces – by subject, by article, from 1 to 2,000 articles?
Warner: It is broken down into 410 days (since the Year of Faith goes longer than a calendar year). Each day has 5-10 paragraphs depending on how long they are and with a practical attempt not to cut off a day in the middle of a complete thought. So there was some thought put into it – primarily by Jeffrey Pinyan, the creator of CatholicCrossReference.com.
FFG: How can this service help dads and moms go deeper in the faith?
Warner: As parents, we have an obligation to pass on and teach our kids the faith given to us. If we don’t know that faith, we’re going to have a hard time passing it on. Studying the Catechism is a primary way to understand our faith, so I hope this inspires a few of us (myself included) to know our faith better and to share it more effectively with our kids.
To sign up for the free e-mail service, visit Flocknote.com/catechism
Photo credit: CNS photo/Nancy Phelan Wiechec