Episode 010 – Atlanta Memories


I just got back from the 75th annual NCCL convention and expo in Atlanta, Georgia. I had a great time meeting new friends, catching up with old friends, engaging in learning sessions, and experiencing TED-style general sessions.

I also took a portable audio recorder with me to talk with some of the presenters, attendees, and NCCL leaders at the conference. This “audio postcard” gives just a glimpse of what we all heard, saw, and felt during our five days in Atlanta. Enjoy!

#NCCL2011 TweetUp Round-Up

Tonight I had the immense pleasure of gathering with about 12 other Catholic bloggers and Twitter users at the NCCL convention in Atlanta, Georgia. We sat around, enjoyed some great local beer, and discussed everything from the Blessed Virgin’s role as the model catechist to WordPress configurations; Twitter clients to the Civil War War of Northern Aggression; protecting yourself online to the number of hits our sites get.

It was a very diverse group, but I was amazed at how quickly we fell into easy conversation. That is, I think, one of the gifts of Catholicism: a shared culture and experience that allows us to relate to one another despite any superficial differences. It is also a gift of social media: I knew several of the people even though we had never met face-to-face. Combined, Catholicism and social media make a potent combination. I’m convinced that we’ve only seen the beginning of what we can accomplish with these new tools.

Thank you again to everyone who came out for the TweetUp. Hopefully this will become an annual event; for my part, I will certainly work to see that it is.

#NCCL2011 – Tech 101 Notes

Today at the NCCL 2011 conference I participated in a learning session on using social media to promote parish programs. My portion of the session focused on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn and how they are similar and different.

For those that  participated  in the learning session, here is a list of resources (some of which I mentioned in the presentation) with more information on how these services can be used to enhance your ministry:




General Social Media Tips

#NCCL2011, Here I Come!

Today I take off for the annual National Conference for Catechetical Leadership convention and expo, being held this year in Atlanta, Georgia. I’ve got a pretty busy slate lined up: I’m attending the Rep Council meeting (I recently agreed to represent the Province of Chicago), I’ll be part of a learning session, and I’m hosting two roundtable discussions. That’s on top of the general sessions, business meetings, socials, and hosting Monday night’s Tweet-Up.  I’m really excited to meet some catechetical colleagues face-to-face for the first time, preview Fr. Barron’s Catholicism Project, and hear Fr. James Martin’s keynote address.

If you’d like to follow the conference online  I’ll be live-tweeting as the opportunity presents itself. I’ll try to point out other folks tweeting the conference, but you should be able to find them by following the hashtag #NCCL2011 on Twitter. Please pray for us that the conference may be a success!

Announcing the Unofficial 2011 NCCL Tweet-Up!

For anyone who will be attending the 2011 NCCL conference — or if you’re just in the Atlanta area — we’re going to have an old-fashioned Tweet-Up on Monday, May 23rd, around 9p ET (after the Sadlier event) at Twenty-Two Storys, the lobby bar and  restaurant  at the Hyatt Regency Atlanta.

This will be an opportunity to meet with other Catholic bloggers and Twitter users to network, discuss catechesis and social networking, or just enjoy a cold drink at the end of the day!

This is completely unofficial; it’s not in the conference program, so please help me spread the word through Twitter, Facebook, or your blog!

If you plan on joining us at the Tweet-Up, please send me a quick RSVP via my contact form so that I can let the bar know how many to expect.  Be sure to wear your conference name badge (if you’re not attending the conference, I’ll have some name tags for you). Contact me for more information, and be sure to follow the conference on Twitter via the #NCCL2011 hashtag!

Episode 009 – Practice Makes Catholic

009Welcome to episode nine of the Catechetical Leader podcast! This month I talked with Joe Paprocki of Catechist’s Journey about his new book: Practice Makes Catholic: Moving from a Learned Faith to a Lived Faith (Loyola Press, 2011). Our conversation ranged from the resurgence of sacramentals to why holding on to hope and joy are more important than ever in the life of the Church.

Joe is a 4th grade catechist, the National Consultant for Faith Formation at Loyola Press, and well-known author of The Bible Blueprint, The Catechist’s Toolbox, and A Well Built Faith.

In addition to the book Joe is offering free resources for anyone who would like to use Practice Makes Catholic in a spiritual mentoring role; those materials are available on the Loyola Press web site.

Click to Play – 009 – Practice Makes Catholic

What is Web 2.0? Webinar “ Footnotes and Further Reading

This afternoon I gave a short presentation to the board of the National Conference for Catechetical Leadership on Web 2.0. As promised to them, here are some links to additional resources and readings on the topics we discussed.



Web 2.0 Concepts

If you were part of the conversation, please leave a comment with your thoughts and reactions!


I mentioned a free co-op e-book during the Q&A. It’s titled What Matters Now and offers 70 big ideas from 70 big thinkers.