You Can Get Time Off From Purgatory by Following the Pope on Twitter
That's all well and good, but let's be real -- what I need is something that can get me upgraded to purgatory in the first place.
Are you hoping to go to Heaven, but pretty sure you won’t get in, like, right away? I know that feel, bro. If that’s the case — and if you’re Catholic — we’ve got good news, because you can now get some time knocked off your stay in purgatory by following the events of the Church’s upcoming World Youth Day on Twitter. Thanks to the magic of plenary indulgences, participating in the rites and festivities of the confusingly named week-long festival that kicks off next Monday in Brazil over social media can get purgatory-bound Catholics into heaven just a little faster.
This is the latest example of the Catholic Church doing its best to bring its roots into the modern world. Granted, its best typically isn’t that great, but we do have to award points for effort, which is basically what the church is doing. Participants in World Youth Day can be granted plenary indulgences from the Church. For those of you unfamiliar with Catholicism’s more archaic legalese, a plenary indulgence is basically time off for good behavior, but you get it from God after you die.
But what about folks who would like to participate but can’t afford a ticket to Brazil? Surely, they deserve a chance to get a couple days shaved from their sentence in purgatory as well, right? The Church thinks so, so they’re offering the same indulgence to Catholics who follow along and participate in the ceremonies at the event on social media. Just following @pontifex won’t be enough, though — you’ll have to really engage with the ceremonies to reap the eternal rewards. According to a decree issued by Cardinal Monteiro de Castro is not just :
“What really matters is that the Pope’s tweets from Brazil, or the photos of World Youth Day that will be posted on Pinterest, should bear authentic spiritual fruit in the hearts of each one of us. Then even a youngster who is a very long way from Brazil and feels involved by a video, a simple text message or an email will be truly taking part in the World Youth Day and will receive the gift of the indulgence.”
In other words, following and sharing media from the event is a lot like going to church — it’s only good for your soul if you’re genuinely into it.
In related news, my eternal soul remains utterly screwed.