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Twenty-Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time – Cycle A

Reflecting on Phil. 2:1-11

There is a compelling documentary on Netflix right now. It’s called The Social Dilemma, I assume to stand in contrast to the 2010 movie The Social Network, which tells the story of Mark Zuckerberg and the founding of Facebook.

This docu-drama features some of the main architects of the most addicting features of Facebook, Google, Twitter and others. These creators admit their horror at what their creations have wrought: sky-high rates of depression and suicide, disinterest in everything one loved before, lethargy and sadness. These are all the markers of addiction, and it has to do with the dopamine delivery to the brain (and, so tragically often, the young brain) that sets up a higher and higher need to click, click, click.

I think of what is probably a global pandemic of internet addiction as I read St. Paul’s brilliant advice to the infant church at Philippi. If every person googling through their favorite internet sites would use Paul’s checklist before clicking deeper in, or, God forbid, sharing the link, the increasing anxiety of our society could be healed.

So, here’s the checklist. Is it true? There are ways to check before you head out to free the trafficked children held in the basement of the pizza parlor. Answer: untrue. Is it honorable? Any call to arms you read on the internet is certainly dishonorable. Is it just? Sometimes social media educates us on justice issues, especially if they come from the Vatican or Catholic Charities. Is it pure? Lovely? Gracious? Ah, just thinking on those things raises endorphins and brings us to that peace which passes the understanding of those who troll the ‘net, hoping to devour our souls.

What rules do you have in your house about screen time?

Kathy McGovern ©2020

Ordinary Time - Cycle A

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