On the list of "people you think of when someone says the phrase 'Catholic Techie,'" I think Matthew Warner, best known as founder of FlockNote, is in the top five.
Everyone knows this man. And he's everywhere: blogging, writing, coding, speaking. I just found out that he's going to be in my diocese next month (and not without a large amount of squeeing, thankyouverymuch).
During the Year of Faith, he got thousands of people reading the Catechism (and, after the powers that be pulled the plug, the Youcat). At various Catholic new media conferences, you'll find him with his team, trying, above all, to help other people.
That's what I have most admired and learned from Matt over the years: the spirit of generosity that comes from being the Body of Christ online. Matt combines humility with humor and tops it with a hunger for Christ, for a faith-filled life, for authenticity in the very best sense.
Tell us about yourself in five words or less.
Work in progress.
Of your pursuits, what's your favorite?
I grew up a total computer nerd who hated reading. That's how I ended up as a computer engineer, web developer, and new media enthusiast. I still love that stuff. But I've grown to love *doing* something with it all even more.
But to answer your question, I've stopped any pursuits that are not my "favorite." So it's hard to choose. But if I had to pick, I'd have to pick that of building a beautiful life for my family with my wife and children.
When you think of the New Evangelization from your approach as a "Catholic Techie," what excites you? What makes you want to continue?
I'm excited because we've only just begun to scratch the surface of what is possible. I think we're beginning to get past the novelty of "new media" and beginning to really learn how to authentically use it as the Church and in direct support of Her mission.
What's the most rewarding aspect of your work?
My day-job is running Flocknote.com. And it's awesome. Every day I pinch myself. It's so rewarding to see how far it's come in a few short years to now serve hundreds and hundreds of parishes, dioceses, etc. all over the country. And we're growing faster every month!
God has really blessed our team and is doing some amazing things. It's rewarding to co-create with God and to have something that can help not only our customers, but our employees and their families, too. And, in particular, it's really rewarding to see tangible ways that we've been able to help so many in the Church take a big step forward with how they are communicating. And in such simple ways.
Outside of that, I'm increasingly thankful for the opportunities I have to write and speak (TheRadicalLife.org). The response I get is such a blessing for me and the whole writing process is something I get so much out of personally. It's been a life-changing experience.
In your spare time, what are we likely to find you doing? Do you have a gadget in hand or do you go native and screenless?
These days, I avoid screens and gadgets as much as possible. I'm around them all day at work. I don't want my kids to grow up thinking life is lived inside a series of glowing rectangles of various sizes. I really do enjoy unplugging as often as possible and I'm trying to make it a consistent habit. I find that it helps me be more present with all the life happening in front of me, and it makes the time I do spend on all of my gadgets far more productive.
Want more Catholic Techie interviews? Here you go.
Copyright 2013 Sarah Reinhard