Maybe you’ve heard about “blockchain technology” in the news. It’s the technology that unpins cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and the smart-contract platform Ethereum – and a new group called Catholic Blockchain wants to put its revolutionary potential in service of the Gospel.
“I believe blockchain technology is one of the most important innovations of the last ten years,” Brantly Millegan, one of the co-founders, told uCatholic, “and the Catholic Church, as the world’s largest global organization, is uniquely placed to benefit from using it.”
Blockchain technology is a new way to do computing that, unlike current systems, allows for the creation of currencies and software programs that operate in a decentralized system that no single government or corporation controls.
And how would this benefit the Church? Millegan gives five concrete examples in an article on their website: empowering the poor in the developing world; fast, cheap, secure international payments; secure long-term storage of important information, such as for sacraments; financial transparency; and unlocking value in the Church’s property and assets. You can read the full article here.
The group also wants to represent Catholic values in the growing blockchain community. “The blockchain community is full of people who are smart, driven, and absolutely dedicated to using this technology to reshape our world in profound way,” Millegan says. “We want the Catholic tradition to have a seat at the table in those discussions.”
In addition to their website, the project also has growing discussion groups for Catholics who want to learn more or get involved on Telegram, Discord, and Facebook. You can also follow them on Twitter and on their Facebook page.
“Much of the Church is still playing catch-up on old-news technologies like websites, smartphones, and social media,” Millegan writes. “We need to do a better job of taking seriously new up-and-coming technologies before we’re already behind. And we believe blockchain technology should be near the top of the list.”
You can learn more on their website catholicblockchain.org.