Lenten Discipline: Giving Up Facebook

I am giving up Facebook for Lent.  My “Mardi Gras” has been to binge on facebook stalking, and now I’ve just de-activated my account to show how much I love the Lord.

I did this last year, but kept my profile up during Lent and just changed the password to something relevant like “DONTEVENTHINKABOUTFACEBOOKUNTILEASTER” that I knew I would remember for 40 days but would provide a suitable deterrent for logging on.

My sister’s 2009 Lenten Discipline was to post a different youtube video on my facebook wall for every day of Lent… 40 in total. I spent most of Easter Sunday watching youtube videos, which I’m sure is exactly how Jesus wants us to celebrate the resurrection.

My sister probably got that idea from the following note I posted on fb to announce my absence last year (apologies to those who have been my facebook friend longer than 12 months… but these videos are just too good not to post!  and if you are reading this in a blog reader, you might need to click through in order to see them):

You must call me if any of the following fits you:

  • Your relationship status changes.
  • You’re having a big party.
  • It’s your birthday.
  • You want me to watch Christian youtube videos of this quality:
  • You are my mother. Or a best friend.

E-mail will work for the following:

  • You’re organizing a study group.
  • You took an awesome photo of me.
  • You found an angry feminist article with which I would agree.
  • You want me to watch Christian youtube videos of this quality:
  • You are my professor. Or a friend.

I can wait for Easter for the following:

  • You are hosting an event out of town that I can’t attend.
  • You’re hosting a lame event, even if it’s in town.
  • You poke me.
  • You want me to watch Christian youtube videos of this quality:

(unfortunately, the original video of “You Spin Me Right Round Jesus” has been removed from youtube, so this is the closest I could find in 2010… excuse the self-righteous commentary and just wave your socks in the air!)

  • You are a friend of a friend of a friend.


So yet again, that’s what I’m giving up for Lent. This year, however, I am also de-activating my account, since I think that will be a better reminder to people who try to invite me to things that I am not actually getting their messages. I also feel like thumbing my nose at the internet behemoth that is facebook, particularly with their new (lack of) privacy settings.

brief aside: Oh how I miss the days of thefacebook.com, back when schools had to petition to allow their students to join! Then it became facebook.com, with decreased privacy and a wider audience. It was about that time that my mother, high-school brother, and retired great-uncle all got online (not that it’s bad to be friends with them — it’s just different from only having college classmates online). And now new.facebook.com has just become another way for your Board of Ordained Ministry to stalk you… (again, not that I have anything to hide, but the blurred lines between professional/private are some days just too much!).

In conjunction with my facebook Lenten discipline, what I’m adding is an intentional commitment to doing my Orthodox Daily Prayer in the mornings and journaling in the evenings. Those are disciplines that I already value, but I am sporadic in my practice [meaning: not on days when I oversleep… which is every day].   As I told some of my fb friends (one of whom I *only* know through the egalitarian/evangelical blogging world) yesterday, if I replace all of my fb-stalking time with prayer time, I will come pretty darn close to praying without ceasing!

So what are you adding/giving up this Lenten season?

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7 Responses to Lenten Discipline: Giving Up Facebook

  1. Mom says:

    I hope you aren’t giving up your blog because I appreciate hearing from you. I can understand your yearning for FB when “friends” actually meant “friends” and not “people I have had some contact with at some point of my life.” (And, I include family in the “friends” category.) Since those of us who were excluded from FB at that time don’t actually know what that was like, we may appreciate the current FB more than you do.
    I’m still debating what to give up. It’s between candy and Fresca — both would be very hard. I have failed repeatedly on the getting up early (i.e., giving up “sleep”), but may try to modify that in some way that I can manage it. I am planning to intentionally journal (which would be helped by the getting up early). But we will see how it goes. Sorry, you are missing my birthday countdown – you’ll miss all my great pics — I guess it’s the price I pay for having a birthday in Lent.

  2. Ashleigh says:

    Can I still email you sweet articles, even though I’m a friend of a friend?? ;o)

    The “You Spend Me Right Round, Jesus” video was CREEEEEEEPY! I’m bummed that you couldn’t find it again to share and creep out others.

    • La Peregrina says:

      Of course you can! I’m glad we discovered we were friends of a friend 🙂

      And I searched really hard for “You Spin Me…” this year — I was so disappointed that it has been removed from youtube!

  3. I have decided to give up Facebook for Lent as well. Check out my blog about the experience: http://40daysnofacebook.com/

  4. jwalkergs says:

    Hey…I’m yet another Facebook Faster for Lent!! I’m surprised there are at least three of us. lol…Here’s my blog if you want to check it out. http://jwalkergs.wordpress.com/

  5. Pingback: Not counting Sundays… « La Peregrina

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