The Pope on Twitter: Benedict XVI Sends His First Tweet

 @MarkJohansonIBT on June 28 2011 4:22 PM

Pope
Pope Benedict XVI checks the new Vatican web portal on an iPad device at the Vatican June 28, 2011. Benedict XVI will launch the site, a news information portal that aggregates the Vatican's various media into a one-stop site for all things papal, on Wednesday, the 60th anniversary of his ordination into the priesthood. REUTERS/Osservatore Romano

Who said the Catholic Church was old fashioned?  Who said the Catholic Church was behind the times?

Check this out: Pope Benedict XVI's First Ever Tweet

Pope Benedict XVI tweeted for the first time today. Dear Friends, I just launched News.va, he wrote. Praised be our Lord Jesus Christ! With my prayers and blessings, Benedictus.

The News.va he wrote about is the new Vatican news site that includes articles, a calendar, radio and video from the Vatican's media services. The Pope used an Apple iPad today to launch the Web portal, which is in Italian and English.

He sent his tweet from the Vatican News Twitter account, which only has about 14,200 followers (although that's up from 12,000 before the Pope's message).

The portal www.news.va for the first time aggregates information from the Vatican's various print, online, radio and television media. It's the latest effort by the Vatican to bring its evangelizing message to a greater, Internet-savvy audience and follows forays into Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

The Pope on Twitter seems like a natural extension of his new effort to get with the times.  Officials hope the new portal, while mostly designed to provide Vatican news in an easy-to-use setting to the outside world, might also improve the Vatican's own internal communications by sharing information.

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