Pope Francis calls texts, internet, social media ‘gifts of God’

by: John DyeJanuary 22, 2016
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Pope Francis waves during a special audience for the Jubilee of the workers of the shrines in Paul VI hall at the Vatican, January 21, 2016. REUTERS/Tony Gentile

Pope Francis waves during a special audience for the Jubilee of the workers of the shrines in Paul VI hall at the Vatican, January 21, 2016. REUTERS/Tony Gentile

The head of the Catholic Church and renowned champion of all things awesome has proclaimed that the wonders of modern technology are “a gift of God which involves a great responsibility.”

The admittedly tech un-savvy 79-year-old went on to put to bed the notion that online interaction is somehow less ‘real’ than traditional means of communication. “It is not technology which determines whether or not communication is authentic,” said Pope Francis, “but rather the human heart and our capacity to use wisely the means at our disposal… the Internet could be used to build a society which is healthy and open to sharing.”

Peeple appSee also: Peeple app will let everyone you know rate you like a restaurant, whether you like it or not9

Although some other commenters are putting a cynical spin on this sentiment, calling modern communicative tools a gift of science rather than some almighty being, there’s no reason to take the Pope’s words so literally. The technology at our fingertips truly is marvelous and incredibly powerful. Our voices can now be heard across the globe, and the words we wield affect people’s lives in a profound way. From the ugliness of cyber bullying to the strange humanity of PostSecret to the unlimited possibilities of Zombocom, the internet truly is a potent gift.

“Social networks can facilitate relationships and promote the good of society, but they can also lead to further polarization and division between individuals and groups,” said Pope Francis. It’s a hefty responsibility, but every day that we use these technical wonders, we have to choose whether we’ll be using them to bring each other closer or drive a wedge between us.

What are your thoughts regarding this idea? Let us know in the comments below!

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  • 1

    And the best gift of all = porn

  • moew

    Why does AA peg 2 cores on my 8 core cpu? Is it the many ads? Is it the hijack of the back button? It’s probably that and spyware.

  • RG

    What a load of bollocks, Clergyman. That’s insulting to human ingenuity and graft.

    • Android Developer

      What’s insulting in glorifying what humans have achieved?

      • no matter

        Attributing the glory to nothingness? Yeah, that’s what RG was getting at, plus… We are responsible for owr own deeds, and hoped-for future, and until we GET that, we might be doomed as a species – we’re not sure. There is only one way to become sure, and a non-destructive test isn’t it. Are you really a programmer? As a used-to-be programmer myself (DOS! Them were the hard days), I like to think good programmers are the ones that GET logic. But not all do :(

        • Android Developer

          He didn’t glorify nothingness. For him, god is not nothing. He just glorified humans for those achievements. I don’t see what’s wrong with that.
          If you say to someone that he’s god’s gift to humanity, how could this be insulting? It’s a complement and not an insult.
          You need to understand other people’s belief. Also, yes I’m a programmer, but this has nothing to do with it.

  • apolloa

    The Pope’s an idiot and has a lot to answer for protecting peodophiles. I think life is a gift of God, not SMS!!

  • The Pope on that dope if he thinks God gifted us the evil evil Internet and sext messaging

    • Jonathon Rios

      Pick on a 79 year old man, I hope they keep your parents far away from you when they reach that age out of fear of you abusing them.

  • Marius Tomas

    he didnt said thats its seither good or Bad. its actually how we decide to use it…. so yea when some decide to use internet for peodophile matter’s its disadvantage of internet but u can also do good things with internet too. seriously if you think then anything, Anything can be good and bad… is religion good? Yes and No. look into middle East….. so yea. actually the old man is not that stupid. I am not religious or something but sometimes he saying some smart things

    • PandaBread

      I wouldn’t really call stating the obvious as “smart”.

      Giving the credit to the technologies we have now to an invisible being is a slap in the face to all the men and women (and robots?) who gave a lot of time, effort, and sacrifices.

      • Carlitos

        Nobody is stating that God magically brought text, internet, and social media and put it in our laps to use. Stop with the blind hate or whatever it is you have going on.
        It was very much a man made thing, i dont disagree that effort, time a sweat was put into it. You have to look at it as in, it was through the help of God that it came to be, or perhaps thanks to some of peoples beliefs that we have these things, because it makes them a part of who they are.

        • PandaBread

          mag·ic
          ˈmajik/Submit
          noun
          1. the power of apparently influencing the course of events by using mysterious or supernatural forces.

          You just contradicted yourself there. Whatever you and the pope are talking about is the very definition of magic.
          You see I’m not hating, I just want to give credit where credit is due.

          • Carlitos

            I didn’t say anything about magic, yet your over here pulling up random definitions. Nothing mysterious and supernatural happened, just like I stated, and agreed with you, that it was through the work and effort of other people. We are in the 21st century, no one thinks magic is a thing. So idk why you are trying to make it seem like we talking about some magical shit. Im just saying not to take things so literal. That is your problem, your taking the popes words to literally when you shouldn’t.
            Just like you shouldn’t take the bible to literally cause it can cause a whole lot of contradictions and a lot of confusion. You have to look at it in a different angle, all i am saying. Again no one is saying that God magically made all these things and then through some divine interaction handed them to men.

          • Jonathon Rios

            I’m not religious but I’m also not an asshat like you to other people. I believe in the right to believe and not treating anyone as lesser in intelligence but right now I’m calling you an asshat.

          • PandaBread

            I never called anyone less intelligent. Stop putting words in my mouth sir. Carlitos and i had a good respectful back and forth and never was there any name calling.

            You on the other hand start calling me an a**hat because i have a difference in belief than yours? Who’s the childish a**hat now?

          • Jonathon Rios

            You, asshat.

  • jason mil

    hahah

  • Marius Tomas

    I think he surely knows that it wasn’t created by.god, how stupid person should be …but he is a Pope he have to mention god…

  • Planterz

    I’m an atheist (but I try not to be too in-your-face about it), but I will agree that the smartphone is perhaps the most (certainly amongst) important invention in recent decades. You have a fully-fledged computer in your pocket with wireless internet access. Instant global communication. Instant answers. The wealth of the world’s knowledge at your fingertips. Music, games, movies, and other entertainment. And, of course, pr0n. A decade ago, such technology was barely a twinkle in everybody’s eyes. A decade before that, it was the fanciful predictions of sci-fi movies and TV shows set a century or 3 in the future.

    Even if I believed in God, I wouldn’t say that smartphones and all that were a gift from Him, but Man’s intelligence and natural curiosity is, and innovations such as these are the results of that.

    • Wat

      How can you say you’re an atheist if you just said that man’s intelligence and curiosity is a gift from god?

      • mez

        i dont think you can read.

    • smokebomb

      All the nerds that were inspired by Star Trek and Star Wars Invented the technology we use now.

    • smokebomb

      I don’t think you know what atheist means.

  • Vision

    I BELIEVE IN GOD.

    • Vision

      Ancient Maharishi’s had 12strand DNA, they did not need cockpit in a vimana. See Ajit Vadakayil blog for more..

      • Armaan Modi

        ??

  • Android Developer

    ZomboCom is indeed a great website. :)

    • Armaan Modi

      ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE AT ZOMBOCOM!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Mark Moore

    Christianity does something terrible to the brain. If we could cure Christianity, Islam and Judaism curing diseases, exploring the universe and saving millions from hunger would be so much easier. Without ignorant belief dragging us down we would be so much farther ahead.

    • Jonathon Rios

      Ignorance is unaccepting people and calling them ignorant when the ignorant one is you. I think that there are ignorant and bad people with and without religion or science, and you sir are a very bad person.

      • Crickets

        Trouble is, Mark has staked out the high ground here. Meaning: the majority opinion, the sensible opinion, the supportable/supported opinion. What’s the weather like down there? Why you gotta insult him? Or, what do you think he is ignorant of? You didn’t say!

        With or without religion, you would have good people doing good things and evil people doing evil things. But for good people to do evil things, that takes religion.
        -Steven Weinberg, physicist

      • Marty

        That’s not nice to say. Just because he doesn’t submit to what you submit to isn’t any reason to speak ill of him. What example does Jesus give the world?

        • Jonathon Rios

          Don’t be ignorant and don’t be black.

    • Marty

      There’s a purpose and place for it. Otherwise it wouldn’t exist.

      • mez

        like rape?….it exists so there must be a place and purpose for it

        • Marty

          Come on, don’t be silly. You really equate religion with rape?

          • mez

            nope…..just trying to say you saying its has a purpose because ??? is stupid
            the Catholic church has covered up years of child abuse, and is one of the richest most corrupt organizations the world have ever had..

          • Marty

            I agree. But Christianity is not the Roman cult. Just because the Roman cult parades around as a Christian church doesn’t mean it is. Satan parades around as an angel of light…

            And I didn’t mean the Roman cult has a purpose…at least not a good purpose. I meant that religion…at least the Christian religion… has a purpose. Evil doesn’t count just like corruption doesn’t count as having a legitimate purpose.

          • smokebomb

            What is the Christian religion? There are so many sects and none of you agree.

          • Marty

            True, there are many denominations in the Christian faith. But the one thing that remains the same among them all is Jesus. Some of them put restrictions on gaining access to him. But if anyone knows his words, they also know that’s impossible. Prayer is always a way to his ear at all times anywhere. Not one person, no matter how great or small, can restrict access to Jesus…not even the Pope. They can certainly try to make people believe they can restrict access to him, but Jesus simply laughs and scoffs at them.

            The eternal God…Jesus Christ…is just a personal prayer away. He’s always right there with all believers. He belongs to you, you belong to him. He wants it that way. We all have direct and immediate access to him all the time.

          • smokebomb

            They’ve spent 5B dollars over 10 years hiding paedophiles.

          • smokebomb

            Rape victims often become a prisoner of their own psyche which prevents them from trusting people. Religion is intellectual prison. When you’re religious you’re told to think this way and no other way because the other ways of thinking don’t agree with what you’re told to believe.

          • Marty

            I agree that religion can enslave the mind and spirit, and most assuredly there are denominations within Christianity that use the power of belief to capture people’s minds, but Jesus doesn’t want that and he will always rescue believers from that. “It is for freedom that I have set you free”, are his loving words and will.

            Jesus doesn’t want us caged up and trapped in a box in our minds. Some churches do that for whatever reason. But always stay in Jesus and know he wants us to be free. Not to commit crimes or sins…he wants us free of that also, but to be fully free.

      • smokebomb

        What purpose does religion serve other than controlling the poor and uneducated?

        • Marty

          As long as it’s not being abused it can provide a sense of hope. It (the Christian faith) gives a person an alternative path to travel rather than vengefulness or retribution. A path people otherwise wouldn’t follow because of not having any directive to follow it.

  • Jonathon Rios

    This guy is the coolest Pope, regardless of your beliefs hour can you talk bad about this dude? Picking on a 79 year old man, disgusting and very disturbing.

    • EdmondWherever

      People don’t become immune to criticism just because they reach a certain age. Especially if they hold a position of such power. His damaging remarks about gay and transgender people are no different from his predecessors’.

      • Jonathon Rios

        Yes they can, it’s called giving no f*cks.

        • EdmondWherever

          Still doesn’t mean people can’t criticize him. He’s not off-limits just because he’s 79.

    • Marty

      So according to what I perceive you saying…if Satan (the Devil) paraded around in a cool, hip manner, joking and carrying on like the Pope, he, too, would be “the coolest”. He would be someone you would like and follow?

      • Jonathon Rios

        Your trying to twist words to win an argument my friend, I will not indulge you.

        • Marty

          Not at all. In what way am I twisting words? I’m being very blunt, really. The Antichrcist is of Satan. And Satan doesn’t parade around with a fearsome appearance. The bible says “Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light”. The Antichrist is of Satan. Do you figure the Andtichrist will boldly say, “I’m Satan! Do not listen to me or follow me”? No! He’ll masquerade “as an angel of light”.

          The bible calls angels messengers. It also says they are church leaders: “To the angel of the church in…” And that is what the Antichrist is, a church leader. So the man you called the “coolest Pope” is of Satan. That’s how Satan works. He makes himself appreciable. He makes himself seem innocent and friendly.

          It marvels me why people expect evil to look evil….

          • Jonathon Rios

            It marvels me to think you put this much time and effort in a web page comment, why do all religious people feel they need to write an essay to get their point across? That’s why I left the church too many holier than thou opinions and everyone assumes their ideas are law. Sit down fool.

          • Marty

            Fool? Funny thing…God says in the Bible: “The fool says in his heart, ‘There is no God'”

            God calls an unbeliever a “fool”.

          • Jonathon Rios

            Alight I’ll just call you b*tch.

          • Marty

            No, my name isn’t Butch. Though I have a friend by that nickname.

          • Jonathon Rios

            Sure thing c*nt. Have a nice day.

          • Marty

            Nah, not ‘cent either. That’s belongs to Fitty.

          • Jonathon Rios

            F*ck you

          • Jackal

            You have won here.

  • Spartacus Maximus

    if god existed he would be pissed at this new fangled Tower of Babel.

  • Armaan Modi

    Zombocom!LOL

  • STZ .

    Why is this article about the ramblings of an old guy who believes his invisible friend gave us Texting and the internet even posted here?

    How did this conversation go?
    pope- Whats up god?
    god- I bequeath unto you the internet, the greatest of my gifts
    pope-um, god, did you think this one through?
    god- what? don’t question me
    pope- You give the gift of fact checking your book? people are going to realize it doesn’t add up….
    god- shit…. give it a few weeks and tell them some nonsense about the evil gays and atheists ruining it.
    pope- k.
    god- for my second greatest creation has been turned evil. I shall flood the world and kill you all again.
    pope- ah, people know that didn’t happen the first time. remember, internet, fact checking?
    god- well fuck, just go back to the evil gays and atheists… and condoms.. this is all the Internets fault
    pope- ?….. i’m confused but …. i’ll get that contradicting message out to the people…. they are used to contradictory stuff from us anyway

  • Stoffsprenger

    So many ignorant atheistic comments here. Disgusting! Pope Francis called for responsibility in using these gift of our creator and I totally agree with him when he says, use the tech to create a better world. The whole tech marketing machinery promotes that anyway.
    For you who have a problem accepting that everything good is a gift of God’s love, better accept it and your life will make sense..
    Glorifying human achievements is ok, but parallel to that rejecting God’s hands is plain ignorant.

    • Marty

      I have a problem with a cult that used to torture and destroy people if they questioned even the slightest thing through scientific understanding. The Roman church began as a denomination of Christianity, but soon afterward became the seat of the Antichrist. The Roman church…now a cult…persecuted and killed people who wouldn’t be subjugated to their authority. The only reason they (the Roman church) aren’t overtly doing it today is because they can’t get away with it. But if the environment allowed them to, they (the Roman church) would have the world again in the dark ages of misery.

      This saying strongly applies to the whole history and reality of the Roman church:

      “Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely”

  • Harold J. Wolfe

    I’d just like someone to show me where in the inventive or manufacturing process of an iPhone or Nexus phone, God stepped in to make it.
    Most of the credit goes to Michael Faraday many years ago.

    When evil strikes and 10,000 people die, the Pope won’t say that God brought this on.
    The iPhone gets invented and it’s all due to God.

    • Marty

      The same place where robots make our products. Robots (computers) did it all themselves, right?

      • STZ .

        I unless i misunderstood you. you’re saying that we should thank the people who built the robots? I think the OP was saying that….. Human creativity created iphones etc.

        • Marty

          Then human creativity was the gift that gave us modern technology. That’s all the cult leader is saying. But in true Christianity, everything humanity has and does…not talking about evil things… is a gift of God. It’s a little bit deeper understanding than just the surface of things. Unless God gave humanity this “creativity”, humanity wouldn’t even be living in grass huts to this day.

          • STZ .

            I’m sure you believe that, and that is fine. However, I do not. Our natural creativity is what allowed us to invent gods throughout history. As well as iphones and other great inventions. Not all our inventions are equal to the betterment of society……..

          • Marty

            So you truly believe DNA, more complex than the most complex computer code, came about by accident? If it weren’t for DNA…and God’s grace, I’d still be an unbeliever too. But in my vast imagination I cannot see a way, even over eons of time, where DNA can just construct itself.

          • STZ .

            Just because you don’t understand something doesn’t make it wrong. Feel free to educate your self, even YouTube can help with the basics.

            Yes, dna to the best of our knowledge is the result of billions of years of chemical reactions, and few seeminlgy lucky ones.

            Believe what you want, but educating yourself can do no harm.

          • Marty

            Why would you assume I’m uneducated? You know nothing of me. You think, I suppose, everybody that doesn’t see it your way is willy nilly about what they can’t see. You have no clue about the depths of searching and trying to understand I’ve gone through. You just label my entire existence as frivolous because I can’t clearly see what you also cannot see. That’s right, you cannot see how DNA came to be either. Not one single human being in the entirety of our existence knows how DNA came to be. But because there are ideas about how it came to be, that makes them right and faultless in their understanding.

            Pffft…when you get a clue, we’ll talk.

          • STZ .

            Lol

            This has gotten so far off topic…

            I could comment all day but I won’t. I will let this die.

            Cheers

          • Marty

            I wouldn’t say it’s off topic, it is related to the subject of this article…the self proclaimed “representative of Christ on Earth” known as the Pope. How could anything related to God be off topic?

          • smokebomb

            Hate to break it to you but there is no eternal soul. You’re born, you live, you die. If you’re lucky, you do something meaningful with your time alive that you’re remembered for. Searching for “god” is worthless. Learn right from wrong, be a productive member of society, and die knowing you were a good person. That’s all life is, man. There is no higher meaning. We are nothing more than specs in the infinity of time.

          • Marty

            And you know this with absolute certainty, how? So I would be safer putting my trust in what you say as opposed to what a Christian minister says?

          • smokebomb

            Just as you don’t understand DNA, I don’t understand how anyone can attribute anything to an invisible being nobody has ever perceived with the five senses humans have. Most people have never read the entire bible. I have, not because I’m religious, but to argue people that are into questioning their beliefs. Any time you listen to a sermon is the (insert religious orator here) ever reading cover to cover? No. They pick and choose. Why is that? And most of the time they choose things like Leviticus (the verse about being gay) but they never mention shellfish or wearing clothes made of two different cloths in the same breath. Why? Do you know how many stonings would happen on a daily basis if the bible was followed to the letter? I could go on, but I think these things are enough.

          • smokebomb

            The powerful people Invented religion to control the poor and uneducated. That’s the one purpose of religion. Why do you think there’s so much backlash when someone challenges religion? Once you start questioning it it falls apart.

          • STZ .

            Yep, social control tool is the prime reason for religion. I’d say people stay out of fear and brainwashing.

  • smokebomb

    “Old Man in a Dress says Invisible Friend Invented Modern Technology.”

    Fixed the headline for you.

  • Rohit Raja

    I suppose they’d not like it if we successfuly make a robot with AI (which aint exactly ten years away), then they’d say we should’nt act god? or that God created them too? Dont humans need credit? Wheel was godmade too i must start beleivin…