The Vatican has started a probe into how Pope Francis‘s official Instagram account ended up hitting the “like” button on a photo of a sexy Brazilian bikini model named Natalia Garibotto, who was dressed in a Catholic schoolgirl outfit.
On Nov. 13 a screenshot of the awkward Instagram “like” made its way to social media, before the photograph was “unliked” on Nov. 14, right after the Catholic News Agency (CNA) asked the Holy See Press Office if they would care to comment on the Holy Father’s possible lurking. The provocative picture displayed Garibotto wearing a tartan “skirt” and suspenders, which left little to the imagination, while leaning against a locker with most of her ample hindquarters exposed in full view.
The photo that may have caught the pontiff’s eye was captioned: “I can teach you a thing or two can’t wait for you guys to see my October shoot.”
Barstool Sports was the first eagle-eyed account to pick up on the papal faux pas and subsequently shared the screen recording with a caption reading “Pope Francis is horny as hell.”
Sources with ties to the Vatican press office confirmed to Catholic News Agency that Pope Francis’s many social media accounts are maintained by a team of staffers and they are conducting an internal investigation to find out how the “like” happened.
Pope Francis has always been looked at as a more “liberal” archbishop of Rome since he ascended to the throne of St. Peter after Benedict XVI, who was a more traditional Catholic and German intellectual, resigned his position.
When Pope Francis was voted into the high office by the College of Cardinals, he declined to live in the apostolic palace and set up his own council of advisers to contend with the oversight of Vatican officials.
He is known for visiting refugees and washing the feet of prisoners during his services to pick up the mantle of Christ’s focus on the poorest and most downtrodden people in society.
Garibotto and Pope Francis’s official account do not follow each other on the platform, and the supreme pontiff’s Instagram account does not, in fact, follow anyone else.
Natalia Garibotto, who uses the name Nata Gata online, posted to Twitter when the news came out and told her fans, “At least I’m going to heaven.”
She followed up in another tweet, writing: “Brb on my way to the Vatican.”
The 27-year-old Instagram model admitted to Barstool Sports that she was honored that the head of the Roman Catholic Church’s Instagram had her on their radar, saying: “My mum may hate my ass pics but the Pope be double-tapping.”
CNA reported that COY Co., Garibotto’s official management and publicity firm, leveraged the account of Pope’s “like” for publicity purposes, telling their followers in a post on Friday that their firm had “received the POPE’S OFFICIAL BLESSING.”
The screenshot has officially gone viral, being shared by thousands of users around the world.
Twitter user Colin Litte said: “My mans just admiring God’s creation leave him alone.”
Another person on the platform made a sarcastic joke at the Pope’s expense, saying he’s got 83 years to catch up on. He was apparently referencing the proclamation made by Pope Francis in which he appeared to declare that masturbation is no longer a sin, although this is disputed.
“Now that’s my kind of Pope,” another user weighed in on the supposed mishap.
The racy model now says that the papal account, “Franciscus,” is now in the company of over 133,000 accounts that ‘liked’ her photo.