‘Happiness Engineer’ Michael Hagan, former manager of religious education and catechesis for the Diocese of Burlington, will be the speaker at the next virtual meeting of Vermont Catholic Professionals.

He currently works remotely from Vermont for Flocknote, a communications-first Church software company. “Flocknote is on a mission to build a more connected Church. Our communication tool helps churches reach their members when they need to through text message and email,” Hagan said.

As a happiness engineer at Flocknote, he works closely with customers (Church leaders, pastors, volunteers, parents, etc.) to make sure they can communicate effectively using Flocknote. He also works with Dioceses to help them reach their parishioners from a diocesan level.

Hagan’s VCP presentation, “Using technology in service of the Church,” will focus on the idea that using technology well is “a huge win for the Church, and we can all play a part in helping our parishes in this arena,” he said. “In many churches, digital communication is a realm where relatively little effort on the part of parishioners can bear great fruit toward building a more vibrant parish.”

During his presentation, he will talk about Church teaching related to technology and some of his experiences at Flocknote. He will encourage the Vermont Catholic professionals in attendance to consider ways they can be of service to their parish in the realm of technology.

He said many people can use their knowledge from the secular world to benefit the Church: “We recognize this all the time: The handyman can volunteer time to help with some refurbishments in the church; the accountant can help keep the books; the teacher can help with our religious education program. What about the database managers, the folks who work in communications, the computer science members of your parish, even just the parents who are fluent in computers and social media? By tapping into the skills they’ve picked up in their work, they can offer much value to our churches. We should welcome their skillset and seek out their help.”

A parishioner of St. Francis Xavier Church in Winooski, Hagan is married with two children.

“I’m very fortunate to work in a faith-based company where our mission is to actually assist the Church,” he said. “At Flocknote, we share our faith as a company in prayer, and we also pray with and for our customers on many occasions as well.”

Hagan’s presentation for Vermont Catholic Professionals will take place on Wednesday, April 20, from 8 to 9 a.m. via Zoom.

For more information, go to vermontcatholic.org/vcp.

—Originally published in the Spring 2022 issue of Vermont Catholic magazine.