One pastor’s mission: Giving up social media for Lent

WASHINGTON – During Lent, many give up sweets or alcohol or even swearing — but social media? That’s a tall order. One pastor in Pennsylvania is asking his parishioners to sign off.

“We’ve asked our congregation for Lent as part of it to give up social media for three, four days,” Dr. William Curtis tells CBS Pittsburgh.

Curtis is the pastor of Mount Ararat Baptist Church and admits it’s going to be hard on him too.

“I practically live on Twitter,” he says. His Twitter handle is @pascurtis. His last tweet was on Feb. 8.

Polling residents at a Pittsburgh coffee shop, reporter Jon Delano asked the java lovers (many plugged in to laptops and phones at the time) how they felt about cutting back on social media usage, or going cold turkey. He found they were not quite as inclined as Curtis.

“I feel like I might be missing out on some connections with some friends during that time,” resident Maddie MacMordo said.

“I’m on Facebook, I use it daily and it’s good for me both personally and professionally,” resident Jan Shaw said.

Curtis says since he’ll be offline, he can’t really monitor if his flock is taking the Lenten challenge to heart.

“I don’t think I will be purposefully policing, but let’s say I might every now and then go on and just see,” he says.

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