Adventism’s Sad Relationship With Technology
Being caught between the past and the future is not the same as being of the present. If you are an Adventist employee (and especially if you’re a “leader”), please re-read the previous sentence about 100 times.
This sentence perfectly describes Adventism in the here and now. It’s caught between the days of Ellen White and the second coming. It embraces the past and the future and is meanwhile struggling to understand the present.
One time when I was at an Adventist conference a keynote speaker talked about what Facebook was and how to use it—at a time when Facebook had already been around for some 8 years.
I wasn’t surprised at how lame the conference was—sadly, by now I am used to a lame denomination. I’m feeling like a broken record here but, as I have said before here on this site, most Adventist church websites look like they came from the beginning of the Internet.
I gave a talk at an Adventist conference once where I mentioned how far the church was lagging behind technologically. Afterword, a group gathered around for questions and to chat and people kept mentioning, “Ya, but the church is doing this,” or, “But have you see what the church is doing in regard that?” Sometimes people don’t want to adjust their first impressions. Sometimes people are just pawns.
Yes. I have seen—and heard—it all. TRUST ME. I’ve been involved with the church’s version of “cutting-edge.” I’m not impressed because… ding ding ding: it’s not useful to me (and needless to say, other young people like myself).
Some of the church’s “cutting-edge” may be useful to older Adventists. Some of it may be useful to the Adventist institution and the careerists that are running it. Some of it may not be useful to anyone.
I mean, seriously… Adventist organizations have apps. Am I supposed to throw a party? Adventist organizations have or have worked with programmers. Who cares? None of it is useful to me as a young person.
So if I’m not impressed with Adventism’s use of technology to-date, what would impress me? Something like this, for starters.
It’s not the technology itself, even. It’s what you do with it. It’s what you originate. I’m not sure there’s anyone who calls themselves an Adventist that can dream up a useful bit of technology that would make a difference in the world—much less within the church. The church likes to clone and make it’s own version of things (especially software). What a waste.
There’s technology and then there’s technology. At some point a wheel was cutting-edge technology. Same with a typewriter and a computer that took up the space of an entire room.
I’m honestly surprised there aren’t more Adventists walking around dressed like Ellen or James White (but they are out there, I know you’ve seen them). But even if they don’t look like it on the outside, they often do on the inside. They have iPhones and Samsung Galaxies, sure, but those are old technologies now. Having a smartphone doesn’t mean you can’t act dumb with it.
What is the next frontier? Many Adventists don’t care. Jesus is coming soon. What’s the point?
I mean, one prominent Adventist pastor told me they didn’t want to use a certain online service because “the company might take their content down without warning in the end times.” Seriously? That’s why you’re not going to utilize the best tech out there RIGHT NOW????????????? Just wait until it’s 8 years old. Then hold a seminar on it. Or maybe you ought to waste some precious tithe money or donations or even entire estates from elderly Adventists that trusted you with their money because you told them you were doing cutting-edge things and build your own version of a perfectly useable secular product. Again.
Adventist careerists… why are you like this? I can’t stand it.
Sometimes you just have to rant. It’s not like it matters. The church doesn’t listen.