If the pope ecourages electronic communication, and the pastor says its not ok, is it a sin to disobey the pastor and follow the pope?

Today is world communication day. The pope is encouraging evangelization, building friendships and use of electronic media.
The pastor says “no email” and in general discourages use of it.
Is it a sin to disobey the pastor and follow the pope?

You should post that question to your pastor, I’ll be interested in what he says. Knowing that he must obey is Bishop and pope.

Your pastor said “no email”? What exactly did he mean…at all? Did he explain?

Why do I think there must be more to this?

Does the pastor not want people to communicate with him by e-mail or does he discourage all use of e-mail? Does he discourage other forms of electronic communication such as Facebook or blogs or online fora?

Or has he perhaps discouraged the kind of people who frequently forward every urban legend and joke making the rounds from keeping him on their mailing lists?

I did forward the question to the pastor…no answer. Not suprisingly, the Pastor doesn’t respond to anyones emails. I’ve tried “drop off” inquiries, and snail mail, too. No response. Other parishioners have experienced this as well. He feels that email, in particular, has serious flaws with regard to confidentiality. I don’t really understand. I’m just wondering if it is a sin to diobey him and follow the pope?

Corner him in the confessional. If he doesn’t throw you out, ask him his reasons?

You have your pastor’s personal e-mail address? Or do you have the parish e-mail address? Pastors don’t check the parish e-mails – the staff members do.

Few pastors let parishioners know their e-mail addresses – they’d be swamped with e-mails otherwise, and they’ve got better things to do than sit and read, then answer, all the e-mails.

If a pastor answers one e-mail personally, his risk is that the recipient will pass on his personal e-mail address or his private message to others.

Your pastor has a right to personally not like e-mailing and personally not sharing his address, if that’s the case.

And I suggest you not judge your pastor based on your personal expectations that he respond to you by e-mail. Yes, I think many of us would like our pastors to communicate with his more. But many of us are also quite demanding and unaware of all they’re tasked to do.

I suspect you’re misunderstanding his words about e-mails in general being immoral.

Is he saying “Email is immoral” (a general denunciation) or “Please don’t send me email” (a personal preference)?

There are lots of people in this world who are not computer-literate. The Pope can encourage the use of email in general all he likes, but that doesn’t mean it’s efficient for one particular person.

I can think of several reasons a pastor might ask that he not be sent email:

*]He doesn’t like using computers – perhaps he’s a hunt-and-peck typist, or the parish’s internet connection is ridiculously slow (remember when 14K was a fast connection?).

*]He prefers face-to-face communication when dealing with problems.

*]He has been burned in the past with emails being forwarded or printed and used out of context.

*]He hates being chained to a desk.

*]He has used email but always gotten bogged down with spam, jokes, and so forth and can’t afford the time it takes to sort through it all.

*]He gets too many sensitive inquiries and worries about confidential information being divulged accidentally.
There is no “right” to demand that a pastor use email. I seriously doubt that the Pope intended to require it; there are too many parishes in this world that lack running water and electricity, let alone a T-4 connection.

So, if this is just a question of your pastor not liking email, I don’t think this is an “obey the Pope or my pastor” situation. For whatever reason, your pastor doesn’t like email. That means you need to contact him some other way.

The pastor has the authority to say that his parish will not use email to communicate with members, Web-page, etc.

The pope is not saying that communication with your pastor should be by electronic means, That is his personal choice. It would concern me if a pastor seems to not want to communicate with the people of his parish by any means. Most priests here have their parish email in the bulletin and will answer within a day, most parishes have web-sites. This service is provided by the diocese, and we have even used the website for adult education in the past. I am currently thinking of doing a web-based Adult catechesis program/discussion or a web-based Power-point self-study.

It’s not unusual to not receieve email replies from any other staff from the parish either. The only department that has ever emailed with consistency is the lifeteen program. I think it must be a parish rule.

The pastor is very techno savy with a blackberry, and computer literate, and knows how to work with powerpoint etc.

Then it’s probably one of the other reasons. My guess would be the confidentiality problem. But, whatever the reason, he’s entitled to have such a policy.

In other words, it is a sin? Would it be a mortal or venial sin if i contemplated it then did it, fully knowing that he said no? I don’t see the sin in it…i see the sin in the disobeying part, but i don’t in the email communication.

Dear friend I don’t believe you would be sinning, you must respect your pastor, but all teaching is the domain of Bishops. I don’t believe the pastor has the authority to assign a sin like that.

How about saying that if your pastor (or anyone else) asked you not to communicate with him by e-mail, then doing so would be incredibly rude.

For more information see Luke 6:31.

Wow, I hope this isn’t true! I’d be so hurt if my priest felt this way! He and I email each other. Strange concept about a priest being too busy to communicate with his flock.

I know…do unto others…i was primarily asking about emailing others, not him-i wouldn’t do that (unless i was looking to get some homiletic admonishment, or getting called into the office…no thank you!!!) I’m trying to avoid temporal punishment!

Emailing is a neutral activity. It’s not good or bad. It’s just a tool. It can be a very convenient way to keep in touch with friends who live all over the country. I regularly email friends in NY, Chicago, central Illinois, North Carolina, Maryland and 2 different people I need to keep informed about things but I prefer not to talk to them, if you get my drift. Email and ex-spouses are a great combination.

You can go crazy with email, just like with anything else. But if you don’t let it take over your life and eliminate all your more personal types of communication, I can’t see any reason to avoid it.

Without hearing the entire context of what your priest said, it’s hard to tell what he meant. I don’t think, though, that he meant to tell you that emailing in and of itself is a sin.

I can’t begin to guess what’s going on in your pastor’s mind, but of course there is nothing wrong with emailing people. Punishment of any sort doesn’t enter into it, as there is nothing remotely sinful about using email as a communication tool.

Do you have some difficulties with scrupulosity, perhaps?

No-this is very real. If I were scrupulous would I even be asking this question? Perhaps the pastor? People have labeled him a control freak, but I just think he cares about the salvations of souls :confused:

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