Outgoing Pope sends last tweet to faithful

OUTGOING Pope Benedict XVI sent his last tweet to followers on Thursday.

The retiring Pontiff farewelled his two million followers, tweeting: "Thank you for your love and support. May you always experience the joy that comes from putting Christ at the centre of your lives."

Pope Benedict was the first leader of the Catholic Church to join the micro-blogging website and have his own personal Twitter account, @Pontifex.

But he was a sporadic tweeter, sending less than 40 messages since the account was created.

The Vatican will reportedly leave the account untouched during the "sede vacante" period.

It will be up to Benedict's successor to decide if he wants to be another social media-using Pope.