Pope Francis attends the IEC – 3rd part

23 July 2021
So far, yet so close – Pope Francis and his staff have recognised the opportunities and the dangers provided by social media. As to some surveys the tweets of His Holiness Pope Francis are the second most read Twitter posts in the world in its category.

Pope Francis’ multilingual Twitter account has some 19 million followers, thus the Holy Father’s thoughts can reach about hundred million peoples worldwide through the retweet function.

Benedict XVI’s first post

Pope Benedict XVI’s first Twitter post was released in the summer of 2011, though his own account in nine languages was launched in February 2012 only. The Head of the Church shared his thoughts under the name @pontifex, and could be read in Spanish, Portugal, Polish, Italian, French, Latin, German, English, and Arabic languages. The Papal microblog had some 3 million followers until the resignation of Pope Benedict XVI, these posts are now available in the archives.

Enormous interest

Following his election to the papacy, Pope Francis has continued postings. His first tweet „Habemus Papam Franciscum” was posted right after his election. The Holy Father’s first tweet was retweeted by 68 thousand twitter users. The Twitter world has responded with an outstanding activity to the events of the conclave, and within hours some seven million tweets were reckoned in relation to the papal election.

Football, prayer and spiritual munition

Pope Francis is far more active in interacting with his followers on this social networking than his predecessor was. In his tweets the Pontiff even shares his personal views relating to particular issues. Just to mention his greetings on the opening of the 2014 World Cup. He mostly expresses some kind of spiritual thought in his microblogging, while other times puts focus on the saint of that day.

An opportunity and a danger

The Head of the Catholic Church has recognised the opportunities and the dangers of the digital world. In his Post-Synodal Apostolic Exhortation of 2019, the “Christus Vivit!”, he pointed out that living in a digital culture has just become a lifestyle in our days. “The digital environment, especially the web, has created a new way of communication, it provides extraordinary possibilities to enter into relationships, to have dialogues, or to show solidarity. This is something inherently good, it is God’s gift.” – said the Holy Father.

Beneficiaries of our weaknesses

The Pontiff also noted that “our gestures, our face and look, the moments of silence, the fragrances, or the trembling hands that are all part of our human interactions” are missing from the social media. Communities’ development is not advancing, moreover the individual selfishness and separation perfectly hides behind this type of communication. Pope Francis has been very outspoken when writing about the advantages the large and elite companies benefit from our weaknesses.

Touching messages

The Pontiff’s tweet of 140 characters long was to express his thanks to all helping him in his recovery with their prayers. “I am deeply touched by the many caring messages received these days. I thank everyone for their closeness and prayer.” – can be read in Pope Francis’ tweet on the @Pontifex Twitter page.

The IEC on the web

Key details on the programs of the International Eucharistic Congress, as well as Pope Francis’ coming visit are also to be found on the following pages:

Facebook, Instagram, Twitter

These pages provide you with all the important facts and news, and we do hope to meet you in person between 5 and 12 September on this world event for the organisation of which we had to wait eighty-three years.

For registration please consult our website.



Source: Radio Vaticana, Magyar Kurír