PORTLAND, Maine — “A culture of encounter demands that we be ready not only to give but also to receive. Media can help us greatly in this, especially nowadays, when the networks of human communication have made unprecedented advances. The internet, in particular, offers immense possibilities for encounter and solidarity. This is something truly good, a gift from God,” said Pope Francis on World Communications Day last summer.

Since his Papal Inauguration in March 2013, Pope Francis has encouraged Church leaders around the world to engage with online audiences. In the Diocese of Portland, Bishop Robert P. Deeley is active in the digital environment, even sharing thoughts and pictures on a personal Twitter account (@BishopDeeley).

Continuing in that spirit, the Rev. Michael Seavey is using the art of blogging to connect with Catholics and non-Catholics in the Diocese of Portland.

Seavey is the administrator of Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception Parish in Portland and pastor of the other Portland Peninsula & Island Parishes. His popular blog, found at www.portlanddiocese.org/FrMichaelSeavey, features a variety of informative material that is refreshing the faith for some, and rekindling it for others.

“The blog gives me the opportunity to explain our faith but also to educate on Catholic teaching regarding crucial issues that are impacting many in our communities,” said Seavey.

In addition to posting weekly homilies, Seavey has shared a seven-part series explaining the Catholic Church’s teaching on immigration, testimony he presented in Augusta regarding the issue of general assistance for refugees and asylees, articles he has written for area newspapers, and an essay on the myths and realities of domestic violence.

“At the start, I didn’t know what to expect, but the response from people to the homilies, entries and special messages is inspiring,” said Seavey. “As the Holy Father said, ‘It is not enough to be a passer-by on the digital highways, simply connected; connections need to grow into true encounters.’”