Pope Francis has joined Instagram. As soon as he joined the online photo posting and sharing site, he gained more than a million followers in less than 12 hours.
His first instagram photo was with his head down and sitting and had a caption “Pray for me.” With the Instagram name of Franciscus, the Pope said his aim was “to walk with you along the way of God’s mercy and tenderness,” CNet reports.
The second picture also shows Pope praying near the cross.
“Instagram will help recount the Papacy through images, to enable all those who wish to accompany and know more about Pope Francis’ pontificate to encounter his gestures of tenderness and mercy”, said Msgr. Dario E. Viganò, prefect of the Secretariat for Communications in a press release. “We will choose photographs from the Photographic Service of L’Osservatore Romano, selecting certain details. In this way we can show those aspects of closeness and inclusion that Pope Francis lives every day”.
The statement by Msgr. Viganò said that “the Instagram account will be inaugurated during the Year of Mercy, not by chance. The Jubilee thus enters into social media in a very concrete and natural way.”
“The social media department of the Secretariat for Communications will be responsible for the management of the Pope’s Instagram account, which will post not only photos but also short videos.”
Pope has always been an active member in the social media. He joined Twitter on 2012. This account now has around 9 million followers.
There are still many apprehensions of his joining social media because he can be a subject of online abuse. He himself though active on social media is not an ardent devotee of the platform as last year, according to CNet he preached on “human-to-human” contacts which are far more superior than “this gadget world.”