March 13, 2013 at 3:53 PM ET
The new pope wasted little time in issuing his first tweet: "HABEMUS PAPAM FRANCISCUM," which translates to: "We have Pope Francis."
The message on Twitter came within 30 minutes or so of Pope Francis I being named, and to show the power of social media, it was retweeted 25,000 times within 10 minutes.
"The Twitter account @pontifex was created for the exclusive use of the pope," Paul Tighe, secretary of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications, previously stated on the Vatican Radio, as the world wondered what would happen to the Twitter account once Pope Benedict XVI left the Vatican.
Vatican spokesman the Rev. Federico Lombardi had said that it would be up to the next leader of the Catholic Church whether or not he would use the @Pontifex Twitter account.
The pope emeritus was the first to use the account, starting last December. The word "pontifex" not only means pope in Latin, but traces its roots back to Roman times and also means "bridge builder," suggesting unity, a Vatican official told the AP at that time.
Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, 76, of Buenos Aires was named leader of the world's 1.2 billion Catholics on Wednesday. His introduction via social media followed his stepping out onto the balcony of St. Peter’s Basilica to greet the tens of thousands gathered in the square below.