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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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Sacred space on MySpace

It gets more page views than Google. News Corporation purchased it last year for $580 million. And it might just be the next big thing for those who work with youth.

It’s MySpace, and like other social networking Web sites, it gives users an easy way to post photos, keep a blog and message other users.

Angie Schaffer, youth director of Immanuel Lutheran Church, Waukee, Iowa, recently led a workshop for parents about MySpace.

Schaffer also uses the site to connect with Immanuel’s youth. “It’s an incredibly quick and efficient way to stay in contact with them and, on top of that, it fits in with their lifestyle,” Schaffer said, adding with a laugh that having a MySpace profile “makes them think I’m probably cooler than I actually am.”

Schaffer sends bulletins through the site about upcoming youth group events and also reads her youth’s pages.

“I can send them either a message confidentially to ask how things are going, or I can comment on their page,” Schaffer said. “For a lot of them it’s more comfortable to communicate with me [through MySpace] rather than in person.”

Schaffer cautions both youth and adults that the information they post to MySpace is public and searchable. “You have to be at all times incredibly aware of what you’re putting there and what you’re saying,” she said.


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