FWSB Social Media/Tech Policies
The world of digital communication, with its almost limitless expressive capacity, makes us appreciate all the more Saint Paul’s exclamation:
“Woe to me if I do not preach the Gospel” (1 Cor 9:16) - Pope Benedict XVI, 2010 World Communication Day message
Social Media is the fastest growing form of communication in the United States, especially among youth and young adults. Our Church cannot ignore it, but at the same time we must engage social media in a manner that is safe, responsible and civil.
As Pope Benedict XVI noted in his message for the 44th World Day of Communication, this new form of media “can offer priests and all pastoral workers a wealth of information and content that was difficult to access before, and facilitate forms of collaboration and greater communion in ways that were unthinkable in the past.”
The Church can use social media to encourage respect, dialogue and honest relationships – in other words, “true friendship” (43rd World Communication Day Message). To do so requires us to approach social media as a powerful means of evangelization and to consider the Church’s role in providing a Christian perspective to digital literacy.
Fr. Tom Shoemaker, pastor of St. Charles Borromeo Parish, and Mr. Rob Sordelet, principal of St. Charles Borromeo School, request that you open and read both polices effective on October 18, 2013, the Feast of Saint Luke the Evangelist.
These policies are linked below.
Following the reading of these policies, please print the Verification Form, sign and date it, and return it to the school or parish office.
Social Media Policy
Policy Statement: FWSB recognizes that in today’s environment, with the increasing prevalence of the Internet, employees, clerics and volunteers will use the Internet to conduct ministry work and to communicate with associates and friends. The Internet provides various ways for individuals to interact and has changed the way we communicate and share information. FWSB views the Internet as an important educational and evangelizing tool to promote school and ministerial programs. The diocese encourages administrators, pastors and principals to support Internet use and to give employees, clerics and volunteers the necessary training and tools to interact safely and responsibly online. However, those using the Internet should bear in mind that certain comments and information may have a harmful effect on FWSB, its reputation, its employees, and those whom we serve. In light of this possibility, employees, clerics and volunteers are required to adhere to the following policy regarding the use of personal and ministry websites including social networks and blogs.
Policy and Standards: The Diocese of Fort Wayne – South Bend may supply computers, internet access, and other electronic communication devices to its employees, volunteers, or students in order for them to complete the responsibilities assigned by their positions. The diocese believes these resources are an important educational and evangelizing tool to further the mission of the Church. Therefore, use of these resources must always be consistent with the mission of the Catholic Church. Employees, volunteers, and students must take care to use these tools for their intended purposes. The diocese may monitor user accounts, internet activity, email communications, or any other related use of computers and its networks at any time, with or without notice to users.
Please open both policies, highlighted in red above, and read them. After reading them, please print this VERIFICATION FORM, sign it, and return it to the school office. Thank you!