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Pope sends first tweet, launching new Vatican site
June 28th, 2011
03:16 PM ET

Pope sends first tweet, launching new Vatican site

By Richard Allen Greene, CNN

(CNN) - Twitter has welcomed a new user - one who already has more than one billion followers.

Pope Benedict XVI used Twitter to announce the launch of a new Vatican website, timed to coincide with Wednesday's 60th anniversary of his ordination as a priest.

The website, News.va, showed a photo of the pope with what appeared to be an iPad.

"The pope sent it, but it was prepared for him," Benedict's spokesman, the Rev. Federico Lombardi, told CNN. "The tablet was presented to him. He did the click and sent the tweet."

It was the pope's first tweet, Lombardi confirmed.

"Dear Friends, I just launched News.va Praised be our Lord Jesus Christ! With my prayers and blessings, Benedictus XVI," the message said.

The pope himself may be new to Twitter, but the Vatican has been reasonably web-savvy for years, including launching an iPhone app and a Facebook page for the beatification of Pope John Paul II this year.

Benedict's tweet came on the English news feed for the Vatican, @news_va_en, which picked up about 22,000 new followers after the tweet, nearly tripling its number of followers.

The head of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications, Archbishop Claudio Maria Celli, previewed the new website on Monday, saying it would bring together all the Vatican news outlets in one place.

At launch, it included a scrolling lead spot that showed the pope sending his tweet and a countdown clock to his his trip to Madrid - for which the Vatican has put up yet another website, Madrid11.com.

Joseph Ratzinger - the pope's name before he assumed the throne of St. Peter - was ordained a priest on June 29, 1951, at the age of 24.

- Newsdesk editor, The CNN Wire

Filed under: Belief • Catholic Church • Christianity • Pope Benedict XVI • Technology

soundoff (393 Responses)
  1. To Cathoholics

    Yes, twitter, a vatican castle, a billion dollar yacht, gold lined robes,, Wow! Just like jesus.

    June 28, 2011 at 6:12 pm |
    • KeninTexas

      To Cathoholics said "Yes, twitter, a vatican castle, a billion dollar yacht, gold lined robes,, Wow! Just like jesus.",,, Wow, you really showed your ignorance and bigotry with so few words. First of all, the Vatican is the headquarters of a billion plus member church. It takes a lot of room for what they do. And a lot of the buildings you see are churches and schools. A billion dollar yacht? How stupid are you? And gold lined robes which is gold COLORED cloth, just doesn't really fit into you hate if you really think about it. Why don't you put your bigotry away and grow up.

      June 28, 2011 at 8:26 pm |
    • KeninTexas

      To Cathoholics said "Yes,_ twitter, a vatican_ castle, a billion_ dollar yacht, gold _lined robes,, Wow! Just like jesus.",,, Wow, you really showed your ignorance and bigotry with so few words. First of all, the Vatican is the headquarters of a billion plus member church. It takes a lot of room for what they do. And a lot of the buildings you see are churches and schools. A billion dollar yacht? How stupid are you? And gold lined robes which is gold COLORED cloth, just doesn't really fit into you hate if you really think about it. Why don't you put your bigotry away and grow up.

      June 28, 2011 at 8:28 pm |
    • KeninTexas

      Sorry for the duplicate post. It didn't show up so I thought it got "moderated out". Now it shows up. sorry

      June 28, 2011 at 8:30 pm |
    • Truth Hurts

      To Cathoholics is entirely CORRECT in what he is saying! Too bad if Kenin Texas does not agree but that does not change anything and I know the truth hurts about your pope and his practices in the church and mode of living but facts are facts! There's no denying that he could actually do as the Bible says Jesus told others which was to sell everything and to follow Him. That would truly be living in a Christ-like manner. However, that would never happen as the pope would not want to lose the comfort and luxury that Jesus never had. End of story!

      June 28, 2011 at 8:55 pm |
  2. NWO truther

    The internet is the mark of the beast, Facebook already has information on 500 million users. This would also include android phones (etc), iPhones, yahoo, bing, etc... The illuminati is about to make tshtf.

    June 28, 2011 at 6:12 pm |
    • To Cathoholics

      too funny. If anything, it has helped countries understand the truth. What you really mean is that people and organizations as the pope's get exposed. I imagine that would scare you.

      June 28, 2011 at 6:14 pm |
  3. tessa

    i am so pleased ot be getting many tweets in the future form the holy father..this will make the catholics feel very good!!!

    June 28, 2011 at 5:57 pm |
    • Brad S.

      Yes, Catholics love a good tweeting...

      June 28, 2011 at 6:02 pm |
  4. Zelda

    Catholics are not Christians.

    June 28, 2011 at 5:54 pm |
    • CS

      I would encourage you to explore the Catholic Church's teaching on Jesus Christ, and then reevaluate. A good place to start would be the Catechism of the Catholic Church's teaching on Jesus Christ: http://www.vatican.va/archive/ENG0015/__P1D.HTM

      June 28, 2011 at 5:57 pm |
    • Jason Storey

      You obviously know nothing.

      June 28, 2011 at 6:07 pm |
    • Dave836

      That is so wrong it's ridiculous. We are the first Christians. Look up a guy named Constatine the Great on the internet before you go around making stupid remarks. He established the first official Christian church (Roman Catholic Church) during his reign as Emporer of Rome. All of the other Christianities branched off of us. If anything, we are more Christian than you.

      June 28, 2011 at 6:30 pm |
    • supertechnology

      Who had the Bible before the Protestors created the King James version, and how could any man have the supreme arrogance to put his name on God's word and change God's words?

      June 28, 2011 at 7:38 pm |
    • Noigiler

      I love it when different sects following Christ argue among themselves about who the truest Christians are. It exposes religion for what it really is: a way to intimidate and ultimately dominate those with different beliefs. Keep fighting.

      June 28, 2011 at 7:55 pm |
  5. ashley

    those who bash someone for there religious belief are in themselves ignorant.

    June 28, 2011 at 5:52 pm |
    • To Cathoholics

      Ignorant for not understanding religious delusions? How funny.

      June 28, 2011 at 5:58 pm |
    • Noigiler

      ashley, there would be much less bashing if people observed their religious beliefs in private and didn't try to impose them on others. But when a whack job like Bachmann (only the latest example of a 2,000-year-long string of lunatics) wants my children to learn the fairy tale of creationism as though it were science, well then the bashing is well-deserved.

      June 28, 2011 at 7:58 pm |
  6. scrumby

    Isn't this a sign of the apocalypse, like the 7th seal or something?

    June 28, 2011 at 5:51 pm |
  7. jasonbig

    why he needs tweeter? he is supposed to trust his messages to the holy spirit and blow them into the brains of those ignorants.

    June 28, 2011 at 5:47 pm |
  8. jeri lynn williams

    "A man that is always right knows when he's wrong."

    June 28, 2011 at 5:46 pm |
  9. Brad S.

    Isn't it weird that people take marital and child-rearing advice from creepy old men who were never married or had children? Also, I dare anyone to find the biblical origin of almost any Catholic dogma. It doesn't exist. They have made up arbitrary rules that benefit their own agenda. The Bible itself is a pretty poor guide to healthy living, but when you mix in Catholic dogma, you add an additional layer of arbitrary non-sense.

    June 28, 2011 at 5:43 pm |
    • To Cathoholics

      The pope, bishops and cardinals are a bunch of juvenile delinquents that never grew up. Told to me by an FBI agent while investigating clergy abuse. This agent found that bishops across the US followed systematic cover ups, many bishops were child abusers too. He said that you would be hard pressed to find a bishop who didn't deny an abused child. The agent was later told to lay off the catholic church, even though he uncovered the highest percent of child abusers than any other organization that exists.

      June 28, 2011 at 5:48 pm |
    • CS

      If you'd like the biblical origins of dogma, you could do a lot worse than the Catechism of the Catholic Church: http://www.vatican.va/archive/ENG0015/_INDEX.HTM

      Or Patrick Madrid's book Where is That in the Bible?

      June 28, 2011 at 5:49 pm |
    • narn

      Evidently your FBI agent didn't check out the public schools.

      June 28, 2011 at 5:53 pm |
    • Brad S.

      Oh look... a Catholic promoting web-sites and books. Praying to mother mary is probably the most blatant deviation from normal Christianity. Either way its totally made up. The Pope and his boys sure have run a good scam though. He gets full access to all the luxuries of Vatican City. And then they try to make a big deal about him not having any possessions... very rich.

      June 28, 2011 at 5:54 pm |
    • To Cathoholics

      A castle at the vatican, a billion dollar yacht, gold lined robes. Wow, just like jesus.

      June 28, 2011 at 5:59 pm |
    • CS

      The Bible tells us that Mary is the mother the male child who shall rule all nations with an iron rod (Rev. 12:5) of "those who keep God's commandments and bear witness to Jesus." (Rev. 12:17). The Bible also tells us to honor your father and mother (Exodus 20:12; Ephesians 6:2).

      And no, the Church proper doesn't get money off the books of private individuals.

      June 28, 2011 at 6:01 pm |
  10. fuyuko

    I bet he didn't tweet it himself. Maybe one of those hot swiss guard duded did it for him.

    June 28, 2011 at 5:39 pm |
    • yaa

      😀 The ALtar boys are gone...now there are the tweeter boys in fashion

      June 28, 2011 at 5:46 pm |
  11. To Cathoholics

    The pope himself is a tweet. That is – in past tense.

    June 28, 2011 at 5:30 pm |
    • yaa

      Right!!! what hypocrisy! they should be against science and technology! They should be thinking of burning people at stake for inventing things, tweeter is not "god-given"

      June 28, 2011 at 5:44 pm |
    • CS

      Do remember that Gutenberg was a Catholic. Father George Lemaitre first theorized the existence of the Big Bang. Father Gregor Mendel is known as the father of modern genetics. The Renaissance? Done by Catholics. The Jesuit order contributed hugely to science, including astronomy.

      For Christian contributions to science, see:
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Christian_thinkers_in_science

      For Catholic contributions, see: http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-8759568809464631145#

      June 28, 2011 at 5:53 pm |
  12. skerrick

    Jesus was just a mere man ,it,s LEMMY KILMISTER,whom we look to , there is no salvation in any other !

    June 28, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
  13. tessa

    over one billion and stronger than ever..no matter what anyone thinks or says...this generation and the next will die off but the Roman Catholic church stands till the end of time.

    June 28, 2011 at 5:23 pm |
    • To Cathoholics

      Without fear, your religion wouldn't exist. How sad you people follow by fear. BTW; there are not a billion. Your religion still counts those who walked away, just continued deceit.

      June 28, 2011 at 5:32 pm |
    • Floyd

      @To Cathoholics – no, we base our religion on love, faith and hope. Seems you are misinformed. We are not afraid of anything. Seems you base your religion/ideology on hate, which is sad. Get help, and be happy.

      June 28, 2011 at 5:40 pm |
    • To Cathoholics

      Who cares how you base your beliefs. In fact atheists show love and compassion to others. However it is fear that caused so many to be brainwashed. I treat religion as pppoooorrrnnn and keep it away from children. When they are 18, it becomes their choice. Then again, the religionist don't like that because brainwashing sticks better when introduced during a childs age.

      June 28, 2011 at 5:54 pm |
    • dvdmc16

      over 1 billion served; beneath the golden arches

      June 28, 2011 at 6:01 pm |
  14. tessa

    great...love the man!!

    June 28, 2011 at 5:21 pm |
    • To Cathoholics

      The children abused and their families don't think as you. Then again, as your pope and bishops believe – the heck with those who committed suicide and those mentally ill because of the abuses. In fact the pope, bishops and those as you harm the victims and families again.

      If you demanded laws changed to help expose the truth, I wouldn't be saying this. The truth is the greatest healer, you and your religion deny the truth. Sorry, what does your religion preach? Do as I say, not as I do.

      June 28, 2011 at 5:36 pm |
    • AUEagle

      @To Catholics....dude, you have serious issues.

      June 28, 2011 at 5:44 pm |
    • narn

      I'm a family member of one of those abused by a Catholic priest - for goodness sake, learn about the SOCIETAL problem of child abuse and what's happening under our noses in the public school system (a kid is 100 times more likely to be abused by a public school teacher than a Catholic priest) , in the boy scouts, in churches that are not Catholic. Instead people turn a blind eye to the rest, and then use the victims as their own personal propaganda tool against Catholicism. Shameful indeed.

      June 28, 2011 at 5:50 pm |
    • To Cathoholics

      Then again, the Catholic church lobbies to stop laws that would expose pedos. This now harms all victims, no matter who abused.

      One point that you need to pull together, public school pedophilia was exposed and the child was given proper help. Teachers were praised for blowing in a pedo. The RCC praises those who cover it up.

      June 28, 2011 at 5:57 pm |
    • narn

      No, the point you need to pull together is what's happening under people's very noses and nobody cares, because it doesn't fit into their personal vendetta against a specific group.

      http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2006/08/24/opinion/main1933687.shtml

      June 28, 2011 at 6:02 pm |
  15. Agree With Me Completely Or Be Punished For Eternity!

    Bet Popey has some great tweets:

    "Hemorrhoids really acting up today"

    "I really hate this stupid hat."

    "When the hell am I getting promoted to God anyway?"

    "I'm in charge! ME!"

    June 28, 2011 at 5:20 pm |
  16. ufadoof

    We have yet to see Jesus tweet.

    June 28, 2011 at 5:17 pm |
    • Jesus's First Tweet

      "My followers are morons."

      June 28, 2011 at 5:21 pm |
  17. sue

    the pope is just a mere man ,it,s JESUS ,whom we look to , there is no salvation in any other !

    June 28, 2011 at 5:16 pm |
    • TheTruth72

      AMEN!

      June 28, 2011 at 5:23 pm |
    • Clavigne

      The pope would agree with you.

      June 28, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
  18. Robert

    Let me guess it said "What time are you out of school?"

    June 28, 2011 at 5:14 pm |
  19. BobZemko

    Nice to see the elderly, celibate old man who tries to tell the world what they can and cannot do with their bodies.

    June 28, 2011 at 5:08 pm |
    • Chris

      He doesn't tell the world anything but what the Church teaches. All you are saying is the Pope is Catholic.

      June 28, 2011 at 5:12 pm |
    • To Cathoholics

      Man made rules, huh.. Lots of $$ in that

      June 28, 2011 at 6:08 pm |
  20. HotAirAce

    I suspect/assume you meant to say he is gay in a very negative way?

    While I would agree that pope-a-dope is probably a criminal, I have a problem with people using gay to heap scorn upon others. There is nothing wrong with being gay, and to lump gays in with pope-a-dope does a disservice to all gays. I think you owe all gays an apology.

    June 28, 2011 at 5:00 pm |
    • HotAirAce

      The above was intended to be a reply to someone who called pope-a-dope a "not nice" word, but it looks like that post has been removed...

      June 28, 2011 at 5:04 pm |
    • To Cathoholics

      Well, I think it has nothing to do with being gay rather the fact that the pope wears a dress, ruby red shoes and hat, and then wants to deny gays. Guess he's just jealous, he can't get his man.

      June 28, 2011 at 5:04 pm |
    • Floyd

      @HotAirAce – so it is okay to name call everyone else, but not gays? Can't be selective in your right to fairness and equality. Amazing how you defend one group but insult another in the same line.

      June 28, 2011 at 5:54 pm |
    • HotAirAce

      @Floyd

      I didn't mean to be amazing – I did it intentionally. Being gay is what it is – the way people are born. Using the word to denigrate anyone is not right, just as saying someone is black to denigrate them would not be right. Gays as a group are not evil. Pope-a-dope as a person is – in my opinion based on his protection of known child abusers, and as the world's leading charlatan

      June 29, 2011 at 12:21 am |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.