Bringing you the "Good News" of Jesus Christ and His Church While PROMOTING CATHOLIC Apologetic Support groups loyal to the Holy Father and Church's magisterium
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Debajit Mondal wrote:

Dear Brother Humphrey,

I am a 26-year-old Catholic boy from Kolkata, West Bengal, India. I was going through your web site and came across the post that said there was a need for young volunteers.

I would like to help but would also like to know the roles and responsibilities of the work involved.

Regards,

Debajit

  { I am a young Catholic who would like to answer your call for helping out on your web site. }

Mike replied:

Dear Debajit,

Thank-you for your interest in being a CICA, Catholic Internet Catechist and Apologist, and your interest in helping us out on our web site. With the rise of the web medium, the CICA is a calling that the Church sorely needs.

I would be more than happy to share with you the roles and responsibilities of the work that is needed on our site, but in your situation, I think you have a lot more to offer fellow Indians in Kolkata in the West Bengal area of India. The cultural and time differences between the United States and India are too great for you to help us here in the USA.

Nevertheless, I would encourage you to start your own Catholic Support Group that is faithful to the Holy Father and Magisterium of the Church.

You can read more about the philosophy on this page. I also have ideas for starting your own group on this page.

Maybe you can work within your own parish and see if there are other Catholics interested in Catholic Apologetics who also have Web development and design skills.

The way our group has flowered started ironically as the result of a failure, when Cardinal of Boston at the time, Cardinal Law, had an interest in bringing Catholic Apologetics to the archdiocese of Boston. Through the head of Evangelization we worked on programs to either:

  • bring mini-Catholic apologetics study packages to the local Catholic parishes, or
  • get the faithful in the archdiocese in tune with what Catholic apologetics was through a regular radio program a good friend of mine started.

When both fused out, I started my own mini-group and developed the original site. So you will need someone, with a solid knowledge of how to develop, update and maintain a knowledge base-type web site of "question and answer" postings about the Catholic Faith. I'm the only one on the team who:

  • brings together everyone's answers.
  • converts an e-mail, containing the original question plus my teams answers, to a web page. (I just paste the answers into the original question e-mail as I get answers, then convert the long e-mail to a web posting.)
  • Spell and grammar check them, (I have other helpers for this part), and
  • Format them and publish them on a regular basis

Having one person doing "the web stuff" is the best way, because it ensures multiple people aren't updating the answer, multiple times.

We were able to bring together several people who were interested in answering people's questions on a volunteer basis in service to the Church. In addition, I have always been a strong advocate of having, if possible, an internet-savvy priest, who can occasionally address questions only a priest can answer. This also demonstrates your faithfulness to the Church. Ideally, having a priest who knows canon law can be very helpful.

You need to find a Web Developer who can develop and maintain the site that can:

  • receive questions from the web site
  • answer them
  • answer follow-ups questions
  • collect the questions, answers, and follow-up replies and answers, and convert them to a web posting like this.
  • and publish them on a regular basis.

The concept of a Catholic Internet Catechists and Apologists, CICA takes the parish catechist from the parish basement or classroom, where [he/she] teaches CCD, to the web. Therefore it requires that all volunteer Catholic Apologists who answer questions to:

  • have a strong knowledge of the Catholic faith
  • have a strong personal [prayer|sacramental] life
  • be willing to give charitable constructive criticism and correction to a colleague when needed, and most of all:
  • be as charitable, encouraging and supportive as possible to the questioner, while adhering to the truth and Teachings of the Catholic Faith.

There are three main roles, individuals, or groups involved:

  • The Web guy, who helps in answering questions and ensures all the posted answers are unified and faithful to the Church.
  • the other Catholic apologists, who help the web guy answer the questions
    (If I bring new Catholic Apologists on board, I'm usually looking for a personal recommendation or, assuming they already have a theology degree, that their theology professors have openly professed and publicly made known their mandatum.), and
  • the grammarians, who review the postings to ensure proper grammar and spelling has been used.

Because of the medium you will be working in, you never know the:

  • age
  • race
  • color
  • creed, or
  • religious background

of any of your questioners, unless:

  • you ask
  • they tell you, or
  • you use Skype in your group

but this is good, because you get to talk the soul of the person, apart from any bias' you may personally have.

We can do this with the Church's approval under Canon Law.

but it's extremely important you get Catholic Christians that are faithful to the Church and the Magisterium because ultimately the local bishop has to protect and safeguard the faithful in his diocese. Talking to your local pastor and bishop about your strong interest is a good place to start.

I will keep your name and e-mail on file so we can keep in touch.

If you change your e-mail please notify me.

I also have a LinkedIn Group here and Face book here.

Thanks for your interest!

Mike

Please report any and all typos or grammatical errors.
Suggestions for this web page and the web site can be sent to Mike Humphrey
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