The question of the night, should I take my iPad to Church?
I know this is a business blog with business related topics, specifically storytelling, video, new media, and social media. But tonight I am at an interesting crossroad. This is a post about technology. You know I love my iPad and all of it’s relevant uses. About a month ago I received my iPad 3G in the mail. Ever since then, I have found so many uses beyond just content creation. From reading books, social media, games, drawing, mapping, even writing blog posts.
One of the uses I am looking forward to this fall is using the iPad to teach my Business Writing class at Clemson University. I will not only be able to download the books but also attach it the overhead projector and interact with the class as well.
But here is the cross road, I also use my iPad to read books that I like including the Bible. I have downloaded the Bible HD application that has this most popular text in numerous translations and version. I also take part in a class before I go to the church service. Some call it Sunday School, well we do not. It is one of those unspoken classes during the traditional Sunday School time period. It is kind of hidden away and we like to discuss religion from a whole new lens. I am probably to youngest person in this class…actually my wife has that claim. All of the other members of the class have 30 years minimum on us. Our class is known to many as the Heretics. We call ourselves the seekers.
Dictionary.com defines heretic as a professed believer who maintains religious opinions contrary to those accepted by his or her church or rejects doctrines prescribed by that church.
Right now we are reading “The Soul of Christianity” by Huston Smith. It is not trying to counter or be skeptical of the past but Huston Smith tries “to show how the first-millennium Christianity can surprise the present with new life.” Great book and it makes me think.
Why am I writing this? Because I am debating whether to take a piece of technology into a Baptist church, as a reference to the Bible and this book we are reading. Walking into a class of 20 others where we are the youngest by 30 years with an iPad to take part in a discussion???Hmm…Martin Luther pissed off the Catholic Church by mass producing the books of the bible for others to read. He used technology to mass produce Bible for others to read.
Jesse J. Anderson in his blog talks about “How the iPad Will Change the Church” in his utilitarian explanation of how each piece of functionality will enhance the church experience. Jesse Orndorff in his blog post entitled “iPad for the Church?” talks about how he sees this tool helping pastors and the church. He talks about sermon research, media creation, and he says this “…now imagine what you can do with a iPad app. Embed full size video, sermons, notes, and bible verses. This could be really big for churches in this area.”
So I am torn. I do not want to be flashy yet unassuming. I am learning to use this piece of technology based on utilitarian opportunities. But, I do not want to piss off a church whom might be opposed to something they may not understand. Bringing technology into a southern church will be interesting. It is one thing to take into the class, but how about a southern church sanctuary.
What does this iPad represent? The changing role of technology? What has Apple brought into our lives? Just the other day I watched a movie with people walking around with thin like screens, thin as paper that represent portals of information. Will these mobile pieces allow us to educate and empower tomorrow’s quest for understanding? I will let you know after church tomorrow! I am still seeking…regardless of the technology.
Papa Farkus and I use the Bible on our iTouches during church and though some may think its weird and possibly a “sin”, we know what we are doing isn’t wrong and benefits us. The itouch is small so it doesn’t stand out too much, the iPad however is not 🙂 just be sure to dim the screen and do what YOU think is right in my opinion. Maybe before the service ask those around you if it would bother them too.
This is a great point. I guess us as users have this built up notion that pulling out a “mobile” device is intrusive to the people around us. It is perceived as not engaging within the sanctity of the service, but that is our perception. It is my belief that more and more people like ourselves will engage more with these devices. But, it comes with standards. Why are we showing up for the service? If we pull out the iPad, iPhone, or iPod Touch…we “should” be doing to enhance our experience. But, if we are pulling it out to check email, play games, surf the net for un-related reasons…then us as adults should question why we are there in the first place.
Great thoughts and great points!