Vatican investigating racy Instagram ‘like’ by papal account

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The Vatican is investigating the usage of the papal Instagram account after Pope Francis’ official page liked a racy picture of a scantily-clad model. 

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.

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.

Meanwhile, 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.”

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Screenshot from thecoyco/Instagram

According to Garibotto’s social media account, subscribers to her website receive “sexy content, follow back on socials, [the ability to] chat with me directly, monthly cash prize giveaways, signed Polaroids, and more!” 

Neither Garibotto nor Pope Francis’ official account follows each other on Instagram. Pope Francis’s Instagram account does not follow any other accounts. 

On Twitter, Garibotto commented “At least I’m going to heaven,” and “Brb on my way to the Vatican.” Pictures posted to her Instagram account suggest she was not, in fact, at the Vatican. 

Catholic News Agency was founded in 2004, in response to Pope St. John Paul II’s call for a “New Evangelization.” It is one of the fastest-growing Catholic news providers in the world.