This past Lent, I offered an email retreat. The “topic” was on St. Damien. Each day, retreatants received an email with 1-2 paragraphs describing something about the life of St. Damien, a link to the USCCB for the daily readings, a question to reflect on and a picture related to the day. I used an easy (and cheap!) email marketing tool called Constant Contact to format and send out the emails.
This program also easily allowed people to subscribe, unsubscribe, forward and use social media for further connections. You can see an arhive of the retreat here: http://www.catholichawaii.org/damienretreat
Lent began with 240 retreatants and ended with 536. People continued subscribing until Holy Week as word spread. While intended for people in the State of Hawaii, retreatants signed up from all over the U.S. and even as far as Rome. On any given day, 50-70% of people opened the email and approximately 50 people used the email to access the daily Scriptures.
How can you offer this in your world, for your DRE parents, for your teens, for your entire parish? Here are the key steps: