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Pope makes Twitter debut

December 12, 2012

Pope Benedict XVI made his much-anticipated Twitter debut on December 12, with a first entry welcoming the hundreds of thousands of internet users who were already following his Twitter account online:

Dear friends, I am pleased to get in touch with you through Twitter. Thank you for your generous response. I bless all of you from my heart.

The Pope’s first tweet—which had become the most heavily anticipated act of his pontificate, after a weeks of advance publicity—was posted at the conclusion of his regular weekly public audience. The first tweet was transmitted in English, Italian, Spanish, French, German, Portuguese, Polish, and Arabic simultaneously.

Soon thereafter, the Pope followed up with a question and answer, divided into 2 tweets to accommodate the 140-character Twitter maximum:

How can we celebrate the Year of Faith better in our daily lives?

By speaking with Jesus in prayer, listening to what he tells you in the Gospel and looking for him in those in need.

The Holy Father’s Twitter account (@Pontifex) already has over 1 million followers.

Vatican officials have said that after this initial debut, the Pope himself will not ordinarily write Twitters posts, but will approve messages written by his staff.


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