“Ministry in the Digital Age” by David T. Bourgeois- A Book Review

“So we are at one of the great inflection points, I would argue, in our history. I think this is going to be as big as Gutenberg when it plays out.” – Thomas Friedman

digital age book cover

Going back to the technology that allowed for the creation of roads early in the history of Christianity, David T. Bourgeois recounts the ways in which technology has been used by Christians to spread the message about Jesus. He travels through time with the inventions of the telegraph, the radio, the television and the internet. He argues that while lots of money is still being put into web-sites by ministries, we are living in a post web-site world. The web-site is important, but he argues “The question should change from ‘How do we make our website better?’ to ‘How do we integrate into the digital habits of our audience?'”

This is a very simple to follow book that would be ideal for a staff team or a team of lay people considering the digital presence of your ministry. Bourgeois gives some very easy step by step instructions about how to develop a digital strategy for your ministry. As he says, “Many people within organizations think they have a strategy when, in fact, they have simply decided that they are going to use Facebook and start a blog. This is not a strategy.”

The figures and tables give helpful information that will be easily accessible in the future when planning conversations with other leadership of your ministry. The additional information in the many asides in the text outline practical tools. The format in which these are all included makes this a good resource to return to in the future.

The book is simple and does not try to solve the issues around having a digital presence but it simply provides a great outline for conversation and planning. While this book does not give specific instructions on how to develop or use current technology, I would recommend this as a strategy guide for any minister, ministry team or lay team that is looking to create a dynamic digital presence for their ministry.