Sunday, December 16, 2007

Ballard urges members to participate on the Internet

Elder Ballard has asked church members to voice their beliefs on the internet. It was not too long ago that the church asked church members, wards & stakes to remove their websites while the church replaced them with their own large, correlated websites.  At the time, some wondered if it was wise to lower the number of "pro" websites on the internet while the number of critical sites did not diminish.  Perhaps a new approach may be underway.  Here are some excerpts from a report of Elder Ballard's talk at the Deseret News.

Elder M. Russell Ballard urged graduates at the church-owned Brigham Young University-Hawaii to share their beliefs with the world, instead of allowing people to base their opinions from news reports driven by controversies.

"We are living in a world saturated with all kinds of voices," .."Perhaps now, more than ever, we have a major responsibility as Latter-day Saints to define ourselves, instead of letting others define us," .."Perhaps there is no other time in its history when the church has received more attention from the news media and on the Internet than right now."  ... "There are conversations going on about the church constantly," ... "Those conversations will continue whether or not we choose to participate in them. But we cannot sit on the sidelines while others, including our critics, attempt to define what the church teaches."

LDS faithful can change perceptions of the church "one conversation at a time," through a clear and simple message of the Restoration. Elder Ballard said the Internet is a great tool to start these conversations. In his remarks, he suggested members consider the following:

• Start a blog "and share what you know to be true."
• Download videos from official church and other appropriate sites and send them to your friends.
• Comment on news media sites that report on the church "and voice your views as to the accuracy of the reports."

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