Friending Pope Benedict on Facebook?

In April 2005, just after the death of Pope John Paul II, Pope Benedict sent the following text message to Italian mobile phone users: “Let us go forth in the joy of the risen Lord and trusting in his permanent help.” JPII had been texting Italians with a “thought of the day” while he was still alive, so Benedict was simply carrying on this tradition.

Pope Benedict has more recently used text messaging to communicate with attendees throughout this year’s World Youth Day in Sydney, Australia. His first message read:

Young friend, God and his people expect much from u because u have within you the Fathers supreme gift: the Spirit of Jesus – BXVI.

Now, as the Synod of Bishops meets in Rome, one person suggested Pope Benedict enter the blogoshere. Agnes Lam, president of the Catholic Biblical Association of Hong Kong and one of the few women permitted to attend this meeting, recommended that Benedict start a blog to explain the word of God. She asked ”the Holy Father to open a multi-language blog to shepherd today’s world: [a] daily scriptural verse with [a] simple reflection, brief text and plentiful images.”

So, the question is, will the pope heed Lam’s advice and embark on the wonderful world of blogging? Will he use this twenty-first century means of communication to express obsolete ideology? Or would blogging help the pope realize that some of his teachings are a wee bit outdated?

What next, Pope Benedict on Facebook? If so, you can bet your mortgage that plenty of “good” Catholics will be editing their profiles before they ”friend His Holiness.”

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