The Catholic Church is moving forward with its goals of using social-media to spread the word of God unto its followers. As part of this effort, the the Pope will begin granting forgiveness to people via social media though, there are some rules you have to follow first.
This news comes from the Vatican’s Sacred Apostolic Penitentiary publication, which says that Pope Francis I will be giving “plenary indulgences” (the forgiveness of sins and a special act that is said to reduce time in purgatory). It isn’t unusual for the Pope to grant this to people, though in the past it was only done in person.
This is happening just before the Pope visits the World Youth Festival in Brazil next week. It should be a joyous return to the country for the Pope, The Guardian recently reported that Catholics will be able to follow the “rites and pious exercises” that the Pope will do in Brazil online and take part in the blessing. It should be noted that you don’t just Tweet your sins to the Pope, social-media is just an extension of the rite. If you have confessed your sins, been absolved by a priest and have attended mass, then by using the social networking site you will receive that special forgiveness.
Monsignor Claudio Maria Celli, the president of the Pontifical Council for Social Communication, told Sacred Apostolic Penitentiary stated, “You don’t obtain an indulgence like you get a coffee from a vending machine,” he added, “It’s not enough just to watch a Mass online or follow Pope Francis via live streaming on your iPad or by connecting to Pope2You.net. These are just devices. What really counts is that the Tweet that the Pope will send from Brazil or the photos from World Youth Day produce genuine spiritual fruit in the heart of the person.”