Brian Keaney

Tag: CUA

Thoughts on my almae matres

Not so long ago I said that it would be nice to go back to high school.  I guess I need to amend that and say that I wouldn’t mind, but it couldn’t be my high school.  I’ve had the good fortune to cover a couple basketball games in the O’Donnell Gymnasium – even a couple good ones – but I’ve been disappointed again and again at the lack of students in the stands.  I’d even venture to say that there are more middle school kids there than high school students.

The only person in the crowd worthy of a slap upside the head is the little brother of two kids on the team.  I wish I was half as smart and half as bold as this kid is when I was his age.  I find myself laughing not only when he yells out comments that I wish I had said, but even things that I wouldn’t have thought to say today .  He’s a funny little kid.

The team isn’t great, but they certainly are not bad either.  Last night I covered a game one town away, and the student fans there were loud in volume and large in number.  The thing is, their team isn’t any better.  The records are about the same, and I bet they would match up nicely against each other.  I don’t know how we can fill our stands the way they do, but it’s discouraging anyway.

Also discouraging is the turn my finances took yesterday.  I logged on to my bank account to make sure my paycheck had been deposited.  It had, but the balance looked low.  Turns out Sallie Mae increased my monthly payment by 65% without warning me.  I’m sure they told me at some point the payment would be jumping, but it has been several years at least.  I lucked out in that the change occured on a payday, but a heads up would have been appreciated regardless.  On the bright side, now I’ll be in my 40s when I finish paying them off, not my 50s.

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Jesus was a party animal, and other things I learned on blogs

For those of us with an interest in social media, we know that it is here right now.  For those of us immersed in it, however, it helps to remember that not everyone is.  My grandfather says with great pride that he wouldn’t even know how to turn a computer on.  He’s being slightly facetious, but just last week I saw a woman at Staples struggling to use a fax machine.  We are now several generations beyond the fax machine, but there are still those left behind.

There are plenty who get it, though.  At my alma mater, the Campus Minister has a blog and a Facebook account.  He will usually  post his homilies on the blog, and this week he began with an account of how he is using social media to keep tabs on his flock.

Recently I saw a facebook announcement for a 5 keg party and I thought to myself ….. that’s a lot of beer.

(Sometimes people obviously forget that when they “friend me” I see all of their status updates.)

Like any good fisherman, Fr. Bob goes to where the fish are.  When you are dealing with college students, the fish are on Facebook.  He’s not the only one.  On Twitter, the person I am most proud to be followed by is His Holiness the Dalai Llama (@OHHDLInfo).  Not to be outdone, the Pope is on YouTube.  Plenty of other religious leaders are also increasingly turning to social media to engage and evangelize.

I can no longer stand in the back of St. Vincent’s Chapel and listen to Fr. Bob preach any more than I can listen to the Pope at the Vatican or the Dalai Llama in Asia.  Through social media I can continue to be enriched by their teachings, however.  How else would I have known that Jesus was an even bigger party animal than my classmates?  As Fr. Bob told the students,

Being an inquisitive soul, I asked myself how many gallons 5 kegs would make?

The incredible internet told me that each keg has 15.5 gallons so 5 kegs is 77.5 gallons of beer

It sounds like a lot but a five keg party has nothing on the wedding feast of Cana.

With his first miracle Jesus made 120 gallons or 444 bottles of wine…That’s a real lot of wine.

You have to reach your audience where they are.  That means both in a place (Facebook)  and with a message (keg parties) that they can understand.  Fr. Bob gets it.  If only more did.

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