Pope gathers over 50,000 followers on Twitter

His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI (@Pontifex) has attracted 56,597 in the few hours he has joined Twitter.

He is due to send his first tweet on December 12. The Pontiff was shown how to use Twitter on an iPad last year in the Vatican City.

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Pope sends first tweet

Pope Benedict XVI has sent his first tweet, telling his followers he was "pleased to get in touch with you through Twitter"