Catholics need to learn better how to use the new media, new tools of social communication, and social networking.

(On that score, I renew my appeal that you please use early and often the sharing buttons on these entries. Thanks!)

I saw this at the blog of Paolo Rodari of the Italian Il Foglio.  

It seems that Signor Rodari had a little time on his hands and he compared the number of Twitter followers of several Cardinals of Holy Catholic Church.

In the lead (to my dismay) is Card. Ravasi.  

In testa c’è Ravasi, ma la new entry è Dolan

A guidare i cardinali su twitter è Ravasi (anche se Red Ronnie lo accusa di non ritwittare mai), ma la macchina comunicativa Timothy Dolan (l’ultimo a entrare) sale, come un fulmine.

1. Gianfranco Ravasi, 18.224 followers.
2. Odilo Scherer, 13.462 followers.
3. Angelo Scola, 7.025 followers.
4. Sean Patrick O’Malley, 3.672 followers.
5. Timothy Dolan, 2.060 followers.
6. Wilfrid Fox Napier, 1.202 followers.

Card. Dolan’s account seems top be very new.

He needs followers.  And this is WHY….

I am convinced that because of this blog and you readers and the other Catholic bloggers who picked up the TIME 100 persons campaign, Card. Dolan wound up much higher on the list than he would have otherwise.   TIME Magazine is hardly important anymore, but these lists are useful.  I argued that, even as we admit that TIME is mostly irrelevant, it is better to be on the list than not.  In fact, a couple days I heard the host of an evening analysis show on FNC refer to this list.  Card. Dolan wound up higher on TIME’s list and I believe we made that happen.

So, I make this appeal to you.  Please “follow” Card. Dolan on Twitter, not because his tweets are terribly interesting (so far they aren’t), but because he is the President of the USCCB in a time when the Obama Administration is waging a war on religious liberty.  Push that number of followers up.

To “follow” Card. Dolan…


Send him a supportive tweet and tell him @fatherz sent you!

You saw that liberal catholics tried recently to use Twitter with a hashtag to divert attention from the real point of the CDF’s reforming efforts aimed at the LCWR.  That Twitter-war was written about in major newspapers.  You may say, “Oh that Twitter thing doesn’t interest me!”, but it is not nothing when it comes to current debates in the media and the dissemination of information.  Twitter gets attention.

As we learn from baseball – the game God loves best (except perhaps when the Yankees win) – the slow aggregation of tiny advantages can over the period of a season lead to a winning record.

Oh yes… please “follow” me, too, @fatherz, if you haven’t already.  Thanks!

Click the image, below.  Will you help me get to 10k?

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
This entry was posted in "How To..." - Practical Notes, Brick by Brick, Our Catholic Identity, Religious Liberty, The Drill, The future and our choices, The Last Acceptable Prejudice and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.


  1. Theodore says:

    Card. Dolan up to 3775 as of the time I followed him.

  2. wmeyer says:

    Very odd. There are multiple entries for Cardinal Dolan. The one linked to here now has 2906 followers, including me.

  3. Philangelus says:

    Is that really his account? It’s only got four tweets.

    If so, that’s why he has no followers. ;-) That and the account appears to have been made today.

  4. Faith says:

    Why don’t you reciprocate, Father, and follow me?

  5. kelleyb says:

    @CardinalDolan-just followed him. He should authenticate his account, so there is no confusion for people.
    Father z your twitter share button is seldom available on my screen. I do see your FB share. I use Firefox. You be more than happy to share to the twitterverse anything you post.

  6. Margaret says:

    Cardinal Dolan only has four tweets because he just “went live” yesterday on the Catholic Channel on Sirius. I heard it, Tebow joke and all…

  7. wmeyer says:

    OK, when I followed, he had 2906, now it reports 2591. Anyone have a clue what is going on here?

  8. @CardinalDolan – 3404

  9. plemmen says:

    Even more now Father. I followed him just now. I have been a faithful follower of yours since I started using twitter earlier this year when I started my blog. We ARE Facebook friends and I am wont to give you both Kred and Klout. Thank you for your ministry …

  10. plemmen: Thanks a million!

  11. I was 3,555. Good!

  12. dnicoll says:

    “baseball – the game God loves best”?

    Father, you have clearly never asked him about Cricket.

    [I didn’t need to. He told me.]

  13. RuariJM says:

    “…baseball – the game God loves best …”

    Oh, yeh, Fr Z? As Cricket was clearly invented to give the English a concept of Eternity, I venture to suggest that the arcadian beauty of leather and willow – and its setting (with the exception of the cauldron in Calcutta, obviously), so obviously reminiscent of the Garden of Eden – may have a higher claim in the Lord’s affections!

  14. Springkeeper says:

    I’m #3901!

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  16. Sue in soCal says:

    OK, against everything in me, I just opened a twitter account and am now following Cardinal Dolan and you, Fr. Z. Never say I never do anything for you! [Okay!]

  17. dnicoll says:

    Lol. Interference on the line from LCWR again, Father? :-)

    PS enjoy your trip to the UK for the Latin Mass Society conference. Apologies I can’t be there.

  18. Weetabix says:

    I just joined Twitter to support the Cardinal (and I followed you).

    It seems many of his followers follow merely to disagree with him. I sent him a thanks for his statement on gay marriage.

    Fr. Z – is it appropriate to reply with affirmation so he knows some of us appreciate what he’s doing, or does it just give him more distractions?

  19. Weetabix: I think it is a good idea to send positive messages.

    I suspect that the Cardinal has a minion who will keep an eye on the Twitter account for him. The minion is sure to keep most of the knucklehead stuff off the Cardinal’s desk while pointing to the useful messages. But positive notes are always appreciated, especially because they are so few in number. People often put far more energy into whining and griping than they do about thanking and affirming.

    Furthermore, I think most of us who have been in the media’s eye get used to the stupid messages.
    It is hard to take seriously the anonymous cowards whose rarely ascends above the scatological or perverse.

  20. 6620

    Making some progress.

    Have you gotten involved?

  21. Hidden One says:

    I just noticed that Cardinal Dolan is up to 7 198. He has now passed Cardinal Scola’s 7 152.

  22. Hidden One says:

    Meanwhile, Cardinal Wuerl (!/Cardinal_Wuerl) has 63 followers.

  23. Hidden One says:

    Cardinal Dolan now has 8 160 followers!

  24. Hidden One says:

    Sorry, 8 *8*60. Typo fail.

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