Why Virtual Friendships Matter

by Maricel

If I remembered it right, my first romance with the internet started in high school, not in our insufficient computer class  but as a result of  personal effort aimed to advance my computer skills and knowledge of the internet. Perhaps, even with the vague view I had at that time of how technology may affect the lives of many and of the future, I had already claimed it to be a significant part of my life in the years to come.

That was maybe thirteen years ago.

From being able to learn the Yahoo product’s interface and how to effectively make use of it to further my goals, I went to learning to use other sites- how to maneuver myself to get what I aimed- learn as much info as possible, be more familiar with the environment knowing the time and financial constraints I was considering.

From that time on, I met numerous people of mixed personalities- some shared same views as mine while some others don’t. A perfect blend of experience that in one way or another made me well- equipped for my future online interactions..

Until sometime in 2010, (yes you read it right) in 2010, after finally overthrowing my interest on Friendster, I signed up for Facebook. And so the rest as they say, is a worthwhile history.

Yet not until this year when I started being active on Facebook. Active in the sense that I daily monitor all updates from friends and pages alike, regularly keep track of my personal interaction may it be with people I knew or with just plain strangers. Strangely enough, after a year of exposure in the various Facebook pages, I came up with 295 Facebook friends (as of this time). Out of the 295 I have, 55% of it are my personal friends while the rest are people I came to befriend through Facebook, but as what I most often note were as important as my personal friends are to me.

Below is a short reflection I’ve written which I would have wanted my friends to read, if they have the time.

The opportunity of being able to meet my virtual friends is the thrust I needed to fully immerse myself in knowing my faith by heart. Their presence in my life made me aspire more to know myself as a young Catholic- my responsibilities and how to cope up with it, defend the faith when the need arises, etc. These things, which I used to overlook before became the fuel to keep that fire within me burning. In the end, they are not just my virtual friends, they are my personal spiritual mentors.

I am always grateful for the gift of friendship I am getting from various people on the net. And though I cannot see them personally right now, I just love the idea of having to grow physically, emotionally, mentally and more spiritually with them. I love how they radiate the light of Jesus Christ and how they personify love in its simplest form. Journeying with my virtual friends has been one heavenly experience I am taking with me as a fellow sojourner. Who says that we can’t have a taste of heaven while on earth? No, definitely not me.

Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam!