Vatican to celebrate sainthoods on Twitter

Share this article

The Vatican will reach out to pilgrims through its Twitter account, Facebook and official website
08:42 CEST+02:00
The Vatican is turning to social media to reach out to the millions of pilgrims expected to attend the first double canonisation in the history of the Catholic Church.

Rome city officials expect up to five million people to attend the ceremony officially making John Paul II, who led the Catholic Church from 1978-2005, and John XXIII, who was pope from 1958-1963, into saints.

Besides the official website, the Vatican has set up several Facebook pages using the 2popesaints theme, as well as accounts on Twitter (@2popesaints), Youtube (2popesaints) and Instagram (#2popesaints).

Spokesman of the Holy See, Father Federico Lombardi, did not rule out that the former Pope Benedict XVI would attend the ceremony on April 27th in St Peter's Square in person.

And while he gave no definite forecast for the number of attendees - pegged as high as seven million by some Italian media - he said that all pilgrims to come to the Holy See would be welcome.

"No tickets will be sold. Don't ask the prefecture as there will be none," he joked.

The double canonisation will be the first in the Vatican's history and is expected to appeal to both wings of the Church.

John Paul II, the first non-Italian pope for more than 400 years, was a favourite of conservative Catholics and his canonisation will be one of the fastest in recent history.

Hundreds of thousands of pilgrims from various European countries are expected to attend, especially from his native Poland, and many hotels in Rome
are already booked out.

John XXIII is also widely admired by the Church's progressive wing for calling the Second Vatican Council that transformed the Church.

Story continues below…

A "white night of prayer" will be held in seven languages in eleven churches the night before the ceremony.

"A common thread connects the two popes, their faith," noted Cardinal Vicar of Rome, Agostino Vallini.

Don't miss a story about Italy - Join us on Facebook and Twitter.

Share this article

From our sponsors

Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections

Election Day in the U.S. is less than a month away, and time is running out for Americans living overseas to vote absentee. Here's what to do before it’s too late.


Popular articles