Sunday, April 18, 2010

The Church of Facebook by Jesse Rice

My thoughts on: The Church of Facebook by Jesse Rice
This is a fascinating book that looks at how the technology today is changing the way in which we communicate and interact. It brings to light concepts such as being "tethered" to our technology and electronic messaging systems and what effect that has on our lives.

I had feared that his book would do nothing but slam facebook and social media sites in general, but it did nothing of the sort. Rice took an objective and in-depth look at the issues and also made it fun to read.
I adore Jesse Rice's sense of humour that comes across in the form of random footnotes every once in a while. These short quips would often make me laugh out loud and found myself wishing that there would be more of them. However his website has many short video clips made to promote the book that had me laughing loud enough to make my room mate stop in to see what was so funny.

My summary and humble opinion is that his book is a great book for pastors, lay leaders, anyone wanting to understand the fascination with "that new fangled technology" as my Granny would say or anyone with an interest in sociology or new trends. So I guess in short I think that anyone could stand to learn from this book and enjoy themselves in the process. 

Facebook: Where the Future Church Hangs Out
How the Hyperconnected Are Redefining Community

CHURCH OF FACEBOOK FLAT COVER for printingA revolution is taking place, one profile at a time.  Online social networks like Facebook and MySpace are connecting people like never before.  With hundreds of millions of users, they’re creating almost limitless potential to redefine our personal worlds.  It’s a movement that’s changing how we form relationships, perceive others, and shape our identity.

In his new book, The Church of Facebook (David C Cook, October 2009) author Jesse Rice takes a deeper look at the movement which, at its core, reflects our need for community.  “Our longing for intimacy, connection, and a place to belong has never been a secret, but social networking offers us a new perspective on the way we engage our community,” Rice states.  This new perspective raises new questions: How do these networks impact our relationships?  In what ways are they shaping the way we think of ourselves?  And how might this phenomenon subtly reflect a God who longs to connect with each one of us?

The Church of Facebook explores these ideas and much more, offering a revealing look at the wildly popular world of online social networking.  “The new landscape of social networking tells us two basic things:  One, we have a deep desire to be known.  And, two, we are faced with a technology that both enables and hinders the intimacy we’re looking for,” Rice says.  From personal profiles to status updates, author Jesse Rice takes a thoroughly entertaining and insightful look into what Facebook reveals about us, and what it may mean for the future of “community.”

Social networking is no fad; it has become a fact of life, especially for teens and twenty-somethings. The Church of Facebook is essential reading for parents and pastors who want to understand this trend and its impact on their children and congregations.  Rice’s discussions will engage social networkers of all ages and stages who are wrestling with the very real issues of identity, meaning, purpose, and friendship within the context of virtual communities.

In the end, The Church of Facebook moves readers toward understanding God’s work in the body of Christ, the church.  Driven by Rice’s thought-provoking questions, observations, humor, and heartfelt storytelling, The Church of Facebook challenges readers to consider new perspectives regarding their social networking habits and how those habits may point to deeper heart issues and, ultimately, our hunger for Jesus.

Author Bio: Jesse Rice is a writer and musician and served for eight years as the Contemporary Worship Arts Director at Menlo Park Presbyterian Church, a large and thriving congregation in the heart of Silicon Valley.  Jesse has a Master’s in Counseling Psychology and is an authority on the search for meaning in a fast-paced, hyper-connected world.  He is a sought-after worship leader and speaker with more than fifteen years of experience working with college students and young adults.  Jesse and his wife, Katie, live in Palo Alto, California.

The Church of Facebook by Jesse Rice
David C Cook/October 2009
ISBN: 978-1-4347-6534-5/192 pages/softcover/$12.99

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