KILKENNY -- The Irish papers and Irishblogs are giving a lot of coverage to Pope Benedict XVI. People running online religious sites report spikes in traffic. On the weekend of Pope John Paul II's death, more than 5000 people visited here, most looking for the Abba Pater MP3 file. Like many other people, I would like to pass along my best wishes to the new Pope, but how to do it? My grandmother (May she rest in peace) would press a coin in my hand and dispatch me to light a votive candle. I've done that once in St John the Evangelist in Kilkenny but was crest-fallen when I watched a member of staff blow out the candle after a few hours. I want to know the Pope knows we care so I propose setting up a premium text number that faithful Irish can use to stay in contact with the Vatican. It's easy to print all the text messages once a week and place them under the altar linen for a Sunday service in Rome. In a country with an untapped geriatic market of texters, this idea could spark hundreds of extra euro for the networks each week. Remember, you heard it here.
From the Sunday Tribune's front page:
Catholic Ireland's message to Pope Benedit XVI:
- 44% go to Mass once a week or more often.
- 87% believe comdoms should be used to stop Aids in Africa.
- 75% believe the church should allow women priests.
Kevin Rafter reports the results of the Sunday Tribune/IMS Opinion Poll April 2005 with results on the front page of the Sunday paper, April 24, 2005.