World’s First Scratch ‘n’ Sniff Holy Card

November 9, 2010

SAN RAFAEL, Calif (MetroCatholic) — Smelling is believing! The Pope’s Cologne ( announced today that it has created the world’s first scratch ‘n’ sniff holy card.

The new holy card commemorates the life and work of the 19th Century Roman Catholic Pope, Blessed Pius IX (Giovanni Maria Mastai-Ferretti, 1792-1878) and contains a “scratch ‘n’ sniff” tab scented with the authentic fragrance of His Holiness’s personal cologne.

“The new holy card will serve two purposes,” says Fred Hass, the Marin County, California, physician who recently rediscovered the pontiff’s private formula and began producing the cologne for sale over the Internet. “Between now and the end of the year we’ll be sending our new scratch ‘n’ sniff holy card free with all new purchases of The Pope’s Cologne as a way of saying ‘thank you’ to our web customers. At the same time we’re going to send the holy card to managers of some of the nation’s largest religious retail stores and church gift shops to introduce them to this crisp and fresh new fragrance from the past.”

The idea of scented holy cards is nothing new. Religious cards flourished after the invention of the printing press in 1450, and it was common for people to add scents to their holy cards as they did to their fine linens, handkerchiefs and note paper. What is new here is the “scratch and sniff” technology, a 20th century innovation, which delivers an instant and authentic experience of The Pope’s Cologne along with the portrait of the pontiff.

Hass says that thousands of bottles of The Pope’s Cologne have been sold to customers across the United States and in many countries around the world. “It’s a very popular gift idea,” says Hass, “The fragrance is particularly enjoyed by priests and members of the clergy. Without naming names I can tell you that bottles of The Pope’s Cologne have found their way into abbeys, monasteries, and even residences within the Vatican itself.”

The Pope’s Cologne was the subject of a recent “CBS Sunday Morning” segment during Pope Benedict XVI’s visit to the U.S. It has also received a mention on “The Jay Leno Show.”

Pope Pius IX’s pontificate — the longest since St. Peter’s — is known for the First Vatican Council, promulgation of the doctrine of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary, and defining the dogma of Papal Infallibility. In addition to the Pope’s picture and the scented tab, the new The Pope’s Cologne holy card contains biographical data for Pius IX, or “Pio Nono” as he was affectionately known. “It’s our way of joining with individuals and religious organizations interested in recognizing the accomplishments of this holy and venerable man,” says Hass.

Hass’ company, Excelsis Fine Fragrances, is considering additional releases of holy cards themed to Pius IX and The Pope’s Cologne. “These were important and interesting times,” he says, “and historical images we have of this pope and his world are stunning.”

The Pope’s Cologne is produced by Excelsis Fine Fragrances of San Rafael, California. Information about Pope Pius IX and The Pope’s Cologne can be found on the product website at


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