Will The Next Pope Blog?

It’s clear from the headlines today that Pope John Paul II’s health is continuing to deteriorate and that his end may well be within sight. Regardless of your personal beliefs, I think most would agree that his passing will be a loss; agree with him or not, it’s clear that he was well intentioned in many of his words and actions.

Listening to the news, the Pope is being celebrated for a number of things, but namely, for being very charasmatic, very widely traveled, and for speaking many languages. These same outlets go on to say that these attributes were now “expected” by the people.

Blogs and Feeds have already permeated politics, both from the bottom-up and from the top-down. While there are plenty of bottom-up ‘religious blogs’, will the next leader of the Catholic Church (which claims 1.1 billion followers worldwide) use emerging technologies like blogs/Feeds to extend the reach (i.e., travel), accessibility (i.e., language) and immediacy of Papal messages, whether they be text, audio, or video (i.e., podcasts et al)?

Don’t be too quick to disagree; Vatican Radio’s 200 journalists already allow it to broadcast to 61 countries in 40 languages, with both live and on-demand audio broadcasting…

Update 4/5/2005:
On April 2nd, CNET posted about many uses of technology the Catholic Church has embraced under Pope John Paul II. And, on April 3rd, they noted the use of email and SMS to announce the Pope’s passing. It seems like only a matter of time before Feeds will be used to distribute religious messages from the top-down. Universal in-box, indeed…

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5 comments on “Will The Next Pope Blog?
  1. Anonymous says:

    WWJB — What Would Jesus Blog?

  2. Fez Monkey says:

    A better question is Who will Jesus Choose?

    Make your guess at
    http://www.fezbrothersink.com/pick-a-pope.htm

  3. Anonymous says:

    http://popeiswrong.blogspot.com/

    It’s a sad day when the current leader of the global Catholic Church still lives with his head in the sand. As others have said, he is not so much a conservative, as he is a reactionary. Of course, this blogger is not Catholic, nor do we believe in any kind of supernatural deity of any organized religion, and we certainly don’t believe in some kid called Jesus or this Jewish hocus-pocus stuff called “the messiah”. It’s just here, folks, on Planet Earth, doing this best with our native intelliegence and evolving DNA. So the pope is not really the representative of anybody or anything, unless you want to see he is the representative or symobl of human’s Dark Ages of Superstition.

    Meanwhile, here is what some non-superstitious members of the Human Blogosphere are saying about Bene-Dick-tum the 16th:

    0.1 Headline “The new Pope”
    Okay, it’s none of my business, really. He’s not my Pope. But Ratzinger? A doctrinal hard-liner? What a lost opportunity. At a time when the deveoped countries are seen as stomping all over the third world via globalization and the heavy-handed behavior of multinationals, the choice of a third-world Pope, or a social liberal, or both, could have been a strong humanistic statement. It also could have gone far toward rejuvenating the Church, which has been — on the ground, not from Rome — a force for social justice in many parts of the world, and whose numbers are seriously slipping. Instead, they’ve chosen a man whose focus is strict doctrinal interpretation. Are they trying to fight fundamentalism with fundamentalism? I see this choice as doing nothing to bring back to the Church people driven away by scandals and the perceived lack of relevance of the Chruch to the day-to-day issues of people’s lives. It seems to me this will, if anything, only increase that perception. Oh, well. It’s hard to fight the zeitgeist, and hidebound fundamentalism does seem to be the order of the day.

    0.2 So how does B-16 see other religions? Good questions.
    He sees them as inferior and lacking.
    Note: In 1997, Ratzinger called Buddhism an “auto-erotic spirituality”[Benny! Stop masturbating beneath your cloak!] that offers “transcendence without imposing concrete religious obligations.”
    Hinduism, he said, offers “false hope,” [and yes, Xianity offers true hope, sure, Benny!] in that it guarantees “purification” based on a “morally cruel” concept of reincarnation resembling “a continuous circle of hell.”[And Jesus on the bloody cross is an improvement, you imposter and fraud you!]
    At the time, Cardinal Ratzinger, now B-16, predicted that Buddhism would replace Marxism as the Catholic church’s main enemy.
    QUOTE: “Ratzinger is being falsely described as a conservative, when in fact he, despite his publicly genteel manner, is a raging reactionary. Unlike many American conservatives who oppose gay sexual practices but not their legal rights, Ratzinger in 1992 argued against human rights for gays, stressing that their civil liberties could be ‘legitimately limited.’”

    0.3 Pope Ratzinger believes and says this: “That the Jews are connected with God in a special way and that God does not want that bond to fail is entirely obvious” ….”We wait for the instant in which Israel will say ‘yes’ to Christ, but we know that it has a special mission in history now … which is significant for the world.”
    Come on Papa Ratzi, the Jews aint never going anywhere near Christ. Get over it. Wake up and smell the reality of your post-Christian idiocy!

    0.4 “The world celebrates a 78-year old anti-gay, anti-contraception, anti-choice, anti-euthanasia, anti-premarital-intercourse and anti-21st-Century Pope! I could go on and on about Pope Benedict XVI but Peat over at ”Peephole in my Skull” blog types faster.”

    0.5 ”I don’t know why you even care. Like you said, he is not your Pope. And in fact, he is nobody’s Pope. There is no God, never was, there is no Messiah, never was and never will be, and the entire religous dogma that comes out of the Middle East — all three great psuedo-religions — is nothing but leftover history from the Dark Ages of humankind. Why even both to blog about this? Get over it, these popes represent nothing but the collapse of superstitious dogma. Order lunch. ”

    0.6 Bottom line: Benny 16 is going nowhere fast. He against the Buddhists, against the Hindus, waiting for the Jews to convert en masse (“The messiah has come, the messiah has come,” Moshe, don’t forget to bring the Chinese take-out!”), against the Moslems, against the Shintoists, against the aggies (agnostics) and athees (atheists), and he is surely against the gays and lesbians and bisexuals of the world, not to mention women clergy, women priests and a female pope. Long live the Dark Ages of Human Silliness! God bless Benny the 16th!

  4. Anonymous says:

    Interesting idea, particularly given the bland perspectives put out by the unofficial pope blog.

    Visit this story by Chris Brauer in the UK to get a unique perspective on the Pope and the way his ideas have emerged.