Digital Pastor: Are you one?

You can always count on the Barna Group to release interesting studies/statistics on churches and christianity in general. If you’re interested in stats, they are the people to follow. Recently, Barna Group posted an article called “The Rise of the @Pastor.” It’s full of interesting statistics and has a great infographic. Some highlights and the infographic are below. Be sure to check out the complete article if you have time.

  • More than one in five American pastors (21%) say their churches use Twitter, up from only 14% in 2011.
  • Facebook usage in churches has likewise jumped from just over half (57%) to a full seven in 10.
  • Pastors themselves are also engaged in online communication, with nearly one-quarter (23%) who use Twitter, well over six in 10 (66%) who are on Facebook, and over one in five (22%) who have a personal blog.
  • While both Twitter and Facebook gained church-based users in the last 24 months, Twitter’s growth has been more impressive: Facebook increased penetration among pastors 12% in the last year, while Twitter jumped by 77%.
  • In 2013, 70% of churches report they use Facebook, compared with 57% in 2011.
  • About two-thirds of pastors (66%) say they use Facebook in their role as a pastor.
  • In 2011, only about half of pastors (51%) said social media would be a major part of their church’s ministry. That means there has been a 27% increase in the percentage of pastors who believe social media tools are important to leverage for the sake of ministry.
The lesson learned is that social media, love it or hate it, is here to stay. Usage and the perception of it’s importance is increasing. Social media is a vital part of ministry and should be taken seriously no matter church size or budget.
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