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This page last updated 15 April 2013  

Letters to AO

EVERY WEEK WE PUBLISH a selection of letters we receive in response to something you've read at Anglicans Online. Stop by and have a look at what other AO readers are thinking.

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Letters from 7 to 14 April 2013

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The letters we received last week were all in response to our essay 'Dial M for Marketing' on Sunday, 8 April 2013.

sfx: Phone ringing

If I ever heard of such a thing being done in my jurisdiction, I guarantee there would be a non-robocall to said vicar to cease and desist, and apologize! Or else...

The Right Reverend Pierre Whalon
Convocation of Episcopal Churches in Europe
Paris, FRANCE (Province II)
8 April 2013

Our church reminders come from the announcements during the mass, e-mails, snail mail, facebook, or the bulletin. I do not believe that using robocalls would even be considered by our Rector or Vestry.

Thank you for your weekly thoughts. They are a sweet Monday morning treat.

Mark Ballou
Christ Church
Branford, Connecticut, USA
8 April 2013

Our parishioners became so annoyed by the church directory companies, and the pressure to buy photographs which they exert, that we started taking our own pictures with digital cameras and producing directories with our office computer. The pictures are not professional, but the fact that they are taken in various spots around our facilities make them very pleasing indeed.

William Bippus
St. Paul's Church
Marinette, Wisconsin, USA
8 April 2013

sfx: Still ringing

My parish probably used the same photo directory service as was described, and so we had access to the same robocall service for a free three month or so trial. I only used it once because I knew that its use would have to be extremely judicious. The evaluation at the end was: Wow, amazingly effective and successful; and, not the look and feel we were after. A handful of people were irritated but somewhat less articulate about it than the author of the article. Most simply took it in stride. Success in terms of response and participation in a last-minute event was pretty outstanding.

If it wasn't so expensive to have access to it might be a great tool for getting word out about a parishioner funeral, a disaster relief effort, or an important meeting. When e-blasts get a 40% read rate and newsletters even less, we're all looking for the tools that work.

The Reverend Randal Gardner
St. James by-the-Sea
La Jolla, California, USA
8 April 2013

I am continually grateful for your presence, and often refer parishioners to your opening essay. Indeed, AO is my homepage. The "marketing" essay is particularly interesting, because communicating with a parish that includes members of our Soup Kitchen, working class folks, and professionals is extremely challenging. No one method works for everyone. Would you please share people's responses? I'm always hopeful that we can do a better job--and without tackiness like robocalls! (shuddering all the way down to my Episcopalian, coffee-loving soul)

Alleluia! Christ is risen!

The Reverend Laura Howell
Trinity Episcopal Church
Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, USA
9 April 2013

sfx: And ringing again

The reaction is justified. Since I always hang up the moment I realize the message is recorded, no one would get any action other than that from me. Bless the REAL church callers for any need. JC

JC Eriksen
Grace Calvary Church, Cartersville, Georgia
Blairsville, Georgia USA
14 April 2013

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Earlier letters

We launched our 'Letters to AO' section on 11 May 2003. All published letters are in our archives.


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