Twitter site offers followers line to God

JERUSALEM Tue Aug 18, 2009 6:22pm EDT

Opposition Democratic Party lawmaker Seiji Ohsaka uses Twitter at his office in Tokyo June 29, 2009. REUTERS/Michael Caronna

Opposition Democratic Party lawmaker Seiji Ohsaka uses Twitter at his office in Tokyo June 29, 2009.

Credit: Reuters/Michael Caronna

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Tweeting to God in Israel

Tue, Aug 18 2009

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JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Want to tweet God?

An Israeli university student has opened a Twitter site, twitter.com/thekotel, where prayers can be sent for placement in the crevices of Jerusalem's Western Wall, a Jewish holy site that faithful believe provides a direct line to the Almighty.

"I take their prayers, print them out and drive to Jerusalem to put them in the Western Wall," said Alon Nir, a resident of Tel Aviv.

He said he hoped his initiative on the popular Internet social networking service, where users post brief messages known as tweets, would be "beneficial to people all over the world."

Nir promises to deliver the prayers -- each no longer than a tweet's maximum 140 characters -- on a regular basis.

Prayers, which are sent via a direct message link on Nir's Twitter site, cannot be viewed by the public.

At the Western Wall, where he placed some 1,000 rolled-up papers, Nir told Reuters: "People trusted me with their innermost feelings and secret thoughts ... and it's my duty to provide them with what I promised."

Several services deliver prayers sent by email, text message or fax to the wall. Israeli postal authorities say prayers also arrive from overseas by regular mail, some in envelopes addressed "Dear God."

(Reporting by Lianne Gross, Writing by Jeffrey Heller, Editing by Janet Lawrence)

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