SA cardinal tweets prayer before conclave

2013-03-12 10:30
Roman Catholic cardinals. (File, AP)

Roman Catholic cardinals. (File, AP)

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Vatican's 'Room of Tears' ready for next Pope

2013-03-12 09:22

Just a few metres away from the Sistine Chapel the newly elected Pope will wear his Papal white vestment for the first time. Watch as final preparations are being made at the Vatican. WATCH

Vatican City - Cardinals entering the Vatican on Tuesday ahead of a conclave to elect the next pope took to Twitter to say goodbye to their online flock before they are cut off from the outside world.

"Last tweet before conclave: May Our Father hear and answer with love and mercy all prayers and sacrifices offered for fruitful outcome. God bless!" South African cardinal Wilfrid Napier told his thousands of followers.

Cardinals will be completely isolated inside the Vatican walls for the duration of the conclave, which could last up to a few days.

Jamming devices in the Sistine Chapel block all communications and the Vatican has said anyone caught tweeting will be excommunicated.

Before moving to the Vatican residence where the 115 cardinal electors will eat and sleep during the conclave, US cardinal Roger Mahony wrote: "Last tweet before moving to Casa Santa Martha, and mass to elect a pope.

"First conclave meeting late [on] Tuesday afternoon. Prayers needed," he said.

Pierre Durieux, spokesperson for France's Philippe Barbarin, tweeted to say that the three French cardinals had entered the Vatican and now: "A big silence".

Sister Mary Ann Walsh, spokesperson for the US Conference of Catholic Bishops, expressed concern on her account saying: "In this electronic age, I worry some cardinals may go into iPad and Twitter withdrawal."

Read more on:    roman catholic church  |  wilfrid napier  |  pope francis  |  vatican city  |  religion

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