Pope Benedict XVI looked weary as he celebrated Christmas Eve Mass and gave a solemn speech Tuesday but he is putting fresh energy into social media. The Pope's Twitter account is a global hit.
Merry Twitter Christmas from Pope Benedict XVI. Over the holiday -- including Christmas Eve Mass and his solemn speech to the world on Tuesday, the pope sent off another tweet on his personal account.
For the 14th posting at @pontifex, he answered a question about his favorite family Christmas tradition. Benedict, who has his brother Rev. Georg Ratzinger staying with him over the holiday, replies about a beloved Nativity scene, commonly called a crib.
"The cribs that we built in our home gave me much pleasure. We added figures each year and used moss for decoration."
Earlier on Christmas Eve, the Vatican unveiled an immense manger scene with 100 terra cotta figures. The crèche was donated by corporations and private donors after the exorbitant costs of prior manger scenes was exposed in the documents stolen by the pope's butler.
Monday night, at the end of the two-hour Christmas Vigil Mass, he was brought on a rolling red rolling red platform to see a statue of the Christ child set in a Nativity scene on a side altar within St. Peter's Basilica.
And a shy smile appeared on his weary face..
But even as the world took note of his waning physical strength, Benedict's Vatican is now moving into energetic use of social media.
Although various Vatican agencies and the pope himself have been on Twitter since 2010, it was the announcement this month of the pope's personal account -- and a call for people to send him their questions about faith and tradition -- that caught fire.
He now has 2.3 million followers @pontifex where his tweets are released in eight languages.