Pope Benedict XVI will launch his first tweet on December 12, and it will be published on the occasion of the general audience on Wednesday, but later on may be more frequently answer questions on issues related to the life of faith. Applications may be submitted until December 12 using #askpontifex on Twitter in English, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, German, Polish, Arabic and French. The official account of Benedict XVI being: @ pontifex.
These are the basic information of the new initiative taken by Benedict XVI, "a concrete expression of his belief that the Church must be present in the digital world", as he himself has stated several times even in the messages for the World Day of Social Communications. The "holy tweet", as they were immediately called, were presented this morning in the Vatican during a crowded press conference.
"The Pope's presence on Twitter - we read about it in a statement for the occasion - can be seen as the tip of that iceberg that is the Church's presence in the world of new media . The Church is already present in a abundant in this environment - there is a wide range of initiatives, from the official websites of various institutions and communities, personal websites, blogs and micro-blogs of personalities from the world of the Church and of individual believers. The Pope's presence on Twitter is ultimately supports the efforts of these pioneers to ensure that the good news of Jesus Christ and the teaching of his Church to permeate the public place of exchange and dialogue that was created by social media. The presence of the Pope wants to be an encouragement to all the institutions of the Church and believers to pay attention to develop an appropriate profile for themselves and their beliefs in the "digital continent". The "tweets" of the Pope will be available to believers and non-believers to share, discuss and encourage dialogue. Let us hope that the short messages of the Pope, and the messages most complete they will try to bring in itself, raise questions for people of different countries, languages and cultures. Such questions will be addressed in turn by believers and the heads of local churches, who will be in a better position to compete with them and, more importantly, to be close to those who ask. " In the complex and variate world of communication emerges, however, the attention of many to the ultimate questions of 'human existence: Who am I? what do I know? what should I do? What can I hope? It 'important to welcome people who formulate these questions, opening up the possibility of a profound dialogue "(Message for the World Day of Social Communications 2012)."
"Part of the challenge for the Church in the world of new media is to establish a presence branched capillary, which can effectively compete with the debates, discussions and dialogues that are conveyed by social media , which require replicas direct, personal and punctual, a type is not easy to reach by centralized institutions. Moreover, such a presence or branched capillary reflects the truth of the Church as a community of communities, which is alive both on the local and the universal. The Pope's presence on Twitter will provide his voice as the voice of unity and guide the Church, but will also make an urgent call to all believers to express their "voices" to involve their respective "followers" and "friends" and share with them the hope of a Gospel that speaks of unconditional love of God for every man and woman. "
"In addition to the direct questions, debates and discussions among people who are facilitated by the new media , the Church recognizes their importance as an environment that allows you to teach the truth that the Lord has sent to his Church, and at the same time to listen to others and to learn what is in their hearts and their concerns, to understand who they are and what they are looking for. "Where the messages and information are plentiful, silence becomes essential to discern what which is important from what is useless or accessory. A deep reflection helps us to discover the relationship between events that at first seem unrelated to each other, to evaluate, to analyze the messages, and this means that we can share opinions considered and relevant, giving life to an authentic shared knowledge "(Message for the World Day of Social Communications 2012). It is for this reason that we decided to launch the Twitter channel of the Pope in a form of question and answer. This launch is also an indication of the importance that the Church attributed to listen and is a testament to its constant attention to the conversations, comments, and trends that express in a manner so spontaneous and persistent concerns and hopes of the people. "
It was finally pointed out that the Pope does not "follow" anyone, and this is because "of course there would be excellent candidates, for example, the eminent cardinals, but then you ask why not the archbishops and so on. So for now it's better not to follow anyone. "
The tweets will be published in English and these languages:
Spanish: @ Pontifex_es
Italian: @ Pontifex_it
Portuguese: @ Pontifex_pt
German: @ Pontifex_de
Polish: @ Pontifex_pl
Arabic: @ Pontifex_ar
French: @ Pontifex_fr
Other languages may be added later. For more information, see http://blog.twitter.com/