Viral

The Vatican Is Investigating Why The (Apparently Thirsty) Pope ‘Liked’ A Photo Of A Model’s Butt On Instagram

The Pope may be infallible in the eyes of Catholics, but even he makes mistakes on Instagram. At least, that’s the case if you consider one the most recognizable living religious figures getting caught liking a photograph of a model’s butt to be a “mistake.”

Social media was abuzz earlier this week when images of a model in a schoolgirl uniform circulated with what looked like a “like” from the Pope’s official Instagram account, Franciscus. That account, which is mostly just pictures of the Holy See fully clothed, apparently had liked an image of Natalia Garibotto.

A screenshot of the pope’s handle among the likes quickly went viral. As The Catholic News Agency lays out, it’s unclear exactly when the account liked the butt, though it appears it was not an altered image:

The picture “liked” by Pope Francis’ verified account, Franciscus, features Brazilian model and Twitch streamer Natalia Garibotto wearing a lingerie outfit that resembles a school uniform. Garibotto’s mostly-uncovered posterior is visible in the picture. The exact time of the “like” is unclear, but it was visible and reported by news outlets on November 13.

The photograph was unliked on November 14, after CNA asked the Holy See Press Office for comment. An official for the Holy See Press Office declined to comment on the event.

One fun thing about our life under the algorithms here: generally speaking, for the Pope’s handle to pop up in one of the two “liked by” sections the person viewing the image would have to be following the Pope. So perhaps there is a significant Franciscus/Natalia Garibotto portion of the internet that made discovering this relatively easy.

Still, there are a lot of reasons to be more skeptical about this sexy like than, say, Ted Cruz‘s. Anyone as important as the Pope likely has a team of people working on his social channels, and as CNA points out, it’s likely someone more fallible who is actually responsible:

Sources close to the Vatican press office confirmed to CNA that the pope’s various social media accounts are managed by a team of employees, and that an internal investigation is underway to determine how the “like” happened.

COY Co., Garibotto’s management and publicity firm, used the papal account’s like for publicity purposes, posting on its account Friday that the firm had “received the POPE’S OFFICIAL BLESSING.”

It is all, of course, very funny. Even for the model responsible for making the Pope look thirsty on Instagram.

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