The Pope has a Twitter account.

Early Monday, Pope Benedict XVI signed up for the social network adopting the handle @pontifex. At the time of this writing, his holiness has already amassed a following of over 200,000. And that ain't divine intervention.

Though the account is all set up, the pontif won't actually send his first tweet until Wed. Dec. 12 during his weekly general address.

This isn't the first time Pope Benedict XVI has shown a willingness to embrace modern technology as a platform. In fact, a look at his past comments shows that the decision to join Twitter has been years in the making.

In his World Communications Day address last year, the pontif first revealed his pro-social networking stance.

"Entering cyberspace can be a sign of an authentic search for personal encounters with others, provided that attention is paid to avoiding dangers such as enclosing oneself in a sort of parallel existence, or excessive exposure to the virtual world," he said. "In the search for sharing, for 'friends', there is the challenge to be authentic and faithful, and not give in to the illusion of constructing an artificial public profile for oneself."

In this year's address, he seemed to be warming up to microblogging in particular.

“In concise phrases, often no longer than a verse from the Bible, profound thoughts can be communicated— as long as those taking part in the conversation do not neglect to cultivate their own inner lives,” the Pope preached.

So how will his holiness cultivate his life online? Will he retweet other important world leaders like President Obama and @IAMDIDDY? What kind of hashtagger will he be? And how long until the first cross-posted papal selfie from Instagram? Time will tell.

[via Vatican Today]