Top 25 Social Media Platforms for Use in Church and Ministry

Holy moley there are a ton of social media sites out there! Seriously, how the heck can anyone keep up with them all? After all, some of you church types have to do things like visit people in the hospital, prepare sermons, fix toilets and maybe, just maybe have a social/family life.


This is where folks like me come into the picture. As a friend of mine, Becca Ludlam, reminds me, for some of us, this whole social media thing is what we are called to do and it is simply a lovely life. We are called to explore these technologies and hopefully, for those who just need to know the hows and whys, we can help you use your time well and develop best practices for your ministry.

With this in mind, using six areas of evaluation, I have put together a first run at a Top 25 Social Media Platforms for Use in Church and Ministry. I put this list together, which includes possible applications for minsitry, for the 2013 Church Planters Academy and I expect this will be an ever-changing list as I have already begun reconsidering the rankings of some of the sites.

You can view the slides on Slideshare, where you are welcome to download, steal, borrow, liberate as you feel called!

I will be updating this list on an ongoing basis, but if you would like to get more specific ideas for social media use for church, I am also sharing subscription-based content via BRC+ on Patheos. On BRC+ I’ll be unpacking social media use in the church on a weekly basis as well as offering some worship helps and other exclusive content. If you are interested you can get more info and/or register here.

Emergence Christianity 2013: My First Pechakucha Experience

Photo: Adam Walker Cleaveland from PechaKucha from Barry Taylor

This past week I was invited be part of a slate of PechaKucha presentations at the Emergence Christianity Gathering in Memphis, TN.   Just before it was about to begin I tweeted . . .

Right about now all of the PechaKucha presenters are starting to feel anxious.

And Adam Walker Cleaveland, another of the PechaKucha presenters replied,

doing something difficult, new and crazy in front of 200 people!? No. No nerves here.

Nerves and all, it was wonderful.

What?!?!?! You have never heard of  a PechaKucha presentation?
He says smugly as if he knew what it was when he was first asked to do one 😉

In short, a PechaKucha (Japanese for “chatter”) presentation consists of 20 images projected for 20 seconds each, during which time the presenter talks about whatever he or she wants. 6:40 – Simple, concise and, when done well, beautiful and mesmerizing . [Read more on wikipedia and on]

For some of you, this might seem like an exciting opportunity and for others a terrifying prospect. As one who talks for a living, it was both of those things: liberating and confining. No longer could I lean into comfortable stories and my normal speaking schtick, but I had to be clear about what I wanted to communicate AND free myself up to see where things would go in the moment. I suspect that I accomplished both tasks with varying degrees of success [my favorite response, albeit maybe a little much], but I did survive.

One of the things that I loved about the PechaKucha experience was that, for many folks, this platform was used as an opportunity to step outside of their normal of style and content bubble. I kind of wish that I had done that. While I think mine was well received, next time – and there will be a next time – I will definitely challenge myself to try something new. Maybe I’ll do some spoken word and/or take on a topic that I might not otherwise get a chance to muse about in such a forum: fantasy sports and the body of Christ, the spirituality of baseball or the beauty of 80’s culture.

Don’t judge.

In the end, I thoroughly enjoyed the experience and am grateful for the opportunity.  I would also encourage any conference or gathering to hold an evening of PechaKuchas. Not only would it provide a change of pace for participants, but PechaKuchas create space for fresh voices to share new perspectives and seasoned voices to present in different ways.

And if you ever get an invitation to do one . . . say yes. You will not regret it.

If you are interested in more from the Emergence Christianity presentations, Adam has listed a few on his post, Emergence Christianity: PechaKucha Presentations. Below is my presentation as posted on Slideshare . . . and yes, the last slide has a type. Grrr.

2013 Emergence Christianity PechaKucha Slides on RACE

Originally published on