If it is early summer, then it is time for a mission trip and a blog to read about Belmont students, faculty, and staff during that trip. Paul Chenoweth began using Belmont’s MovableType software two years ago as a tool to allow families, friends, churches, and our campus to follow Betty Wiseman’s sports evangelism teams. This year, Paul and his wife, Debbie, are travelling with Betty and 13 Belmont students to Venezuela. The Venezuela Journal is online now and features a number of stories, images, and a video clip.
Each year, these journals become a little more sophisticated and each year the mission journals reach a wider audience. Paul explains:
“Using a blog from an overseas location is no more difficult than writing and sending an email. The effect is radically different. Once an email goes out, the readership normally stops with the recipient and the life of the email ends with the computer’s trash bin. With a blog, the stories stay online as an archived record. We didn’t understand the impact of that at first, until we saw that these blog/journals continue to have visitors months and years after trips are over.
Students discover that blogging is a natural extension of email-type connnections with consideration that, literally, the whole world has access to the stories. We provide guidelines for use to protect personal privacy and always have someone on campus with access to the blog, just to cover any unintended blunders.
This year, we will experiment more with digital pictures using a universal camera card reader and a software application called Flickr. If time allows, we may try our hand at video teleprompter work using some new laptop software…but finding time AND Internet access concurrently can be quite a challenge.”
The team departs on Monday, May 15th and will return to Nashville on May 26th. You may follow the news from the 16 person team by reading their blog, The Venezuela Journal. If you are interested in receiving an email update when new stories are posted, please add your name to the subscription list using this form.