"One Body, Many Blogs" - Review

I love the elegance of this little ebook compiled by TJ Burdick who is also one of the many contributors.  TJ asked several successful Catholic bloggers one question "In your opinion, what are the 'ten commandments' that Christian bloggers should keep in mind while pressing on in their digital mission?"  This question combined with a diverse group of Catholic bloggers creates a broad range of blogging advice ranging from profound to profoundly hilarious.

The contributors include T.J. Burdick (TJBurdick.com), Deacon Greg Kandra (The Deacon’s Bench), Lisa Hendey (CatholicMom.com), Devin Rose (St. Joseph’s Vanguard), Kevin Knight (New Advent), Frank Weathers (Why I Am Catholic), Jeff Miller (The Curt Jester), Katrina R. Fernandez (The Crescat), Brandon Vogt (BrandonVogt.com), Marc Barnes (BadCatholic and 1flesh.org), and Susan Windley-Daoust (Ironic Catholic).

If you are a Catholic blogger this ebook will give you some good food for thought, and if you are considering starting a blog this ebook will give you a good foundation of blogging principles to start from.

So check out the One Body, Many Blogs website and buy the book here.  All the proceeds go to support the San Jaun Diego Academy, a Catholic immigrant school in Michigan.

My Favorite Commandments from the Ebook

TJ Burdick 5. Jesus should be your only focus Think of your blog as a way to portray your relationship with Christ so that society can understand that relationship. People are looking for truth and the best way they can find it is by living it vicariously through your blog. In order to do that, they must be able to connect with your writing. Make your posts relatable and the truth seekers on the web will find the Truth of Christ in your words. If He is interested, Jesus will make your work known. If not, then know that He is content with having it for Himself.

Deacon Greg Kandra VIII. Pray. Before any post, any comment, any reaction, take a moment and take a deep breath and offer a quick prayer for heavenly intercession and guidance. The act of blogging can really be a kind of prayer, if we work at it. And: I think we should.

Marc Barnes 1. Don’t suck. There is a tendency within the Christian world to think the work we do will be good work, if only we do it for God. This is not true. Whatever work we do will be good work if and only if we do it well. Truly “writing for God” is not something lackadaisical. It does not come with holy feelings. Writing for God means harnessing the intellect, making full use of the talents He endows us with, seeking inspiration in Him, and producing excellent writing, in both style and content. Anything less is no service to God, no matter how well we think we are witnessing, giving testimony, or whatever Christian euphemism we want to use to disguise the fact that we can’t be bothered to make something awesome.

The Vatican 1. Silence and word: two aspects of communication which need to be kept in balance When word and silence become mutually exclusive, communication breaks down, either because it gives rise to confusion or because, on the contrary, it creates an atmosphere of coldness; when they complement one another, however, communication acquires value and meaning... In speaking of God’s grandeur, our language will always prove inadequate and must make space for silent contemplation. Out of such contemplation springs forth, with all its inner power, the urgent sense of mission, the compelling obligation “to communicate that which we have seen and heard” so that all may be in communion with God (1 Jn 1:3). Silent contemplation immerses us in the source of that Love who directs us towards our neighbours so that we may feel their suffering and offer them the light of Christ, his message of life and his saving gift of the fullness of love.

From Pope Benedict XVI, Message of His Holiness for the 46th World Communications Day, Silence and Word: Path of Evangelization. May 20, 2012

Devin Rose 1. Pray before writing each post. Is this a good post? Are you trying to just be sensational or jump on the latest Catholic blogosphere buzz to get more visitors? Discern whether what you are planning to write about is helpful or not.

Susan Windley-Daoust 2. Don't take it too seriously. It's just a blog. Really, it's your scribbles on whatever came to mind that you self-published on a computer. That's it. Any thoughts of how you will change the face of the culture or Catholicism or liturgy or politics is probably prideful wish-fulfillment. Humility is the queen of the virtues, right? It's a BLOG, not Homer's Odyssey.