(Matters India) Pope Francis’ monthly prayers will soon broadcast on social media so Catholics around the world can watch his message and pray with him, a Jesuit-led prayer coalition has announced.
The Jesuit-led Apostleship of Prayer program announced on Vatican Radio this week that starting on Jan. 6 the pontiff’s monthly prayer intentions will be broadcast on the social media platforms of Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.
Jesuit Father Frederic Fornos said during an interview with Vatican Radio that the pope’s appearance on social media will offer hope to Christians facing a multitude of daily challenges.
Fornos added that the purpose of the new iniative is to encourage Christians around the world to pray with the pope.
“[…] to pray together with Pope Francis for these challenges will help a lot,” Fornos said on the radio program.
The video, which will also be available on YouTube along with social media platforms, will be offered in 10 different languages.
According to the Vatican, the first prayer intention, set to air on Wednesday, will have the theme of peace and justice among all people of faith, with the Vatican saying in a statement that the purpose of this prayer intention will be “that sincere dialogue among men and women of different faiths may produce the fruits of peace and justice.”
According to the Catholic Herald, the pope’s topics for his 2016 prayer intentions include “greater care for creation; more support for families in difficulty; just compensation for small farmers; greater respect for women and indigenous peoples; helping sports contribute to peace; encouraging journalists to respect truth and be more ethical; greater support for countries that take in refugees; and an end to the use of child soldiers.”
The pope’s Twitter account has 8.23 million followers and he uses the platform to share tweets and post photos with fans in the many countries he visits throughout the year.
The pope has been described by many as both the “people’s pope” and a pope for a younger generation, as he doesn’t shy away from speaking about hot-button issues such as climate change, abortion and divorce.
As The Christian Post previously reported, an August 2015 survey from the Public Religion Research Institute found that 90 percent of Catholics have “a favorable view of Pope Francis.”
“Fully nine-in-10 U.S. Catholics now say they have a favorable view of Francis, including nearly six-in-10 who have a ‘very favorable’ view. Francis’ favorability rating among U.S. Catholics is comparable to ratings for Pope John Paul II in the 1980s and ’90s, and has surpassed any favorability rating for Pope Benedict XVI in Pew Research Center surveys,” the survey from August 2015 reads.