VATICAN CITY — Move over Flat Stanley, there’s a new kid in town.
His name is “Pedrito” and his goal is to reach the four corners of the Earth, helping people learn about the Catholic faith and get closer to God.
Pedrito, of course, is a doll-version of soon-to-be Saint Pedro Calungsod, a Filipino teen catechist killed in Guam in the 17th century.
People who have purchased the limited-edition of the small doll (it’s a little more than one-foot tall) are asked to take photos of him wherever he may be in the world and upload them to a special page on Facebook. People can also track him with geo-mapping or follow his journey to sainthood on www.sanpedrocalungsod.com
The idea comes from a special team of young people who work on the New Media Committee of the communications office of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines. From their site:
In a YouthPinoy! interview, New Media Committee head Eilleen Esteban explained how Pedrito is meant to adapt the very Pinoy culture of “picture-picture” by having Pedrito meet pilgrims, have his picture taken with them and post them on social media as part of a geo-tagging tracking of his whereabouts.
Being true to Bl. Pedro’s quality of dynamism and energy, ‘mini Pedro’ has been moving around Rome – riding the Italian metro trains and buses ― nearly non-stop since touching down yesterday.
The new media team we met today at the Vatican Press Office gave their Pedrito his own “iPad.” They said it’s obvious he’d have one because “he is the saint of the youth” and even though he died in the 17th century, “he is a saint for the 21st!”
People can also follow Pedrito and the new media team’s coverage of the canonization on twitter @jpcalungsod or on Facebook at FilipinoSaintPedroCalungsod.