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Vatican offers 'time off purgatory' to followers of Pope Francis tweets

Posted by on Jul. 23, 2013 at 5:54 PM
  • 25 Replies

Vatican offers 'time off purgatory' to followers of Pope Francis tweets

Papal court handling pardons for sins says contrite Catholics may win 'indulgences' by following World Youth Day on Twitter

Pope Francis, at Vatican
A court of the Catholic church, led by Pope Francis, above, warns that the faithful cannot obtain lesser punishment just by 'chatting online'. Photograph: Franco Origlia/Getty Images

In its latest attempt to keep up with the times the Vatican has married one of its oldest traditions to the world of social media by offering "indulgences" to followers of Pope Francis' tweets.

The church's granted indulgences reduce the time Catholics believe they will have to spend in purgatory after they have confessed and been absolved of their sins.

The remissions got a bad name in the Middle Ages because unscrupulous churchmen sold them for large sums of money. But now indulgences are being applied to the 21st century.

But a senior Vatican official warned web-surfing Catholics that indulgences still required a dose of old-fashioned faith, and that paradise was not just a few mouse clicks away.

"You can't obtain indulgences like getting a coffee from a vending machine," Archbishop Claudio Maria Celli, head of the pontifical council for social communication, told the Italian daily Corriere della Sera.

Indulgences these days are granted to those who carry out certain tasks – such as climbing the Sacred Steps, in Rome (reportedly brought from Pontius Pilate's house after Jesus scaled them before his crucifixion), a feat that earns believers seven years off purgatory.

But attendance at events such as the Catholic World Youth Day, in Rio de Janeiro, a week-long event starting on 22 July, can also win an indulgence.

Mindful of the faithful who cannot afford to fly to Brazil, the Vatican's sacred apostolic penitentiary, a court which handles the forgiveness of sins, has also extended the privilege to those following the "rites and pious exercises" of the event on television, radio and through social media.

"That includes following Twitter," said a source at the penitentiary, referring to Pope Francis' Twitter account, which has gathered seven million followers. "But you must be following the events live. It is not as if you can get an indulgence by chatting on the internet."

In its decree, the penitentiary said that getting an indulgence would hinge on the beneficiary having previously confessed and being "truly penitent and contrite".

Praying while following events in Rio online would need to be carried out with "requisite devotion", it suggested.

Apart from the papal Twitter account, the Vatican has launched an online news portal supported by an app, a Facebook page, and it plans to use the online social networking site Pinterest.

"What really counts is that the tweets the Pope sends from Brazil or the photos of the Catholic World Youth Day that go up on Pinterest produce authentic spiritual fruit in the hearts of everyone," said Celli.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/jul/16/vatican-indulgences-pope-francis-tweets

by on Jul. 23, 2013 at 5:54 PM
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Replies (1-10):
-Avy-
by Member on Jul. 23, 2013 at 5:56 PM

Fun. Make me popular on social media in exchange for less torture of your eternal soul!

PamR
by Pam on Jul. 23, 2013 at 5:56 PM
3 moms liked this

This is the kind of thing that began the Protestant Reformation. 

snookyfritz
by Platinum Member on Jul. 23, 2013 at 6:05 PM
1 mom liked this

It isn't indulgences for tweets.  It's indulgence for following closely and prayerfully, all the activities, homilies, take confession during the week.

So many people don't know how indulgences work or what they are.

Godgaveme4
by Platinum Member on Jul. 24, 2013 at 1:47 AM
2 moms liked this
This made me giggle. I am so glad I do not believe in purgatory.
Mommy_of_Riley
by Jes on Jul. 24, 2013 at 2:30 AM
Sigh.

This was already hashed out a week or so ago.

Before everyone goes ripping into my religion please go look up what indulgences actually are...

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Mommy_of_Riley
by Jes on Jul. 24, 2013 at 2:32 AM
Here's a link to the other post where this is explained...

http://m.cafemom.com/groups/read_topic.php?group_id=99198&topic_id=18794615
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SuperChicken
by on Jul. 24, 2013 at 8:10 AM
2 moms liked this

I always wondered when I went to Catholic school if God had accountants keeping track of all this, or he did it himself.   It seems rather administrative, but God might enjoy busy work.    My dad was an accountant, so I always liked the thought.

Woodbabe
by Woodie on Jul. 24, 2013 at 8:21 AM

I was just wondering the same thing. Does God give the Pope a special rubber stamp to sign off with, or can he just initial your forehead? Do you get a special line/group to attend Purgatory with? How does he keep up with how many years each person has had taken off? IF they feel like he's overlooked their shortened sentence, do they have recourse to file a complaint?

Quoting SuperChicken:

I always wondered when I went to Catholic school if God had accountants keeping track of all this, or he did it himself.   It seems rather administrative, but God might enjoy busy work.    My dad was an accountant, so I always liked the thought.


 Sexy If its unladylike, fattening or fun, I'm in!
  

rfurlongg
by on Jul. 24, 2013 at 8:23 AM
Cute. Great marketing.
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lancet98
by Silver Member on Jul. 24, 2013 at 8:40 AM
1 mom liked this


I think that it's a good thing.    I also think it's kinda lame to make fun of the beliefs of others like so many here are doing.   

Indulgences are basically about people feeling that their devotional activities mean something.   I have no problem with that.   The article's title is sensationalist, but the article itself makes clear that devotional activity, even on the internet, is of value.

Quoting snookyfritz:

It isn't indulgences for tweets.  It's indulgence for following closely and prayerfully, all the activities, homilies, take confession during the week.

So many people don't know how indulgences work or what they are.



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