17:25 GMT23 November 2020
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    Whether a Vatican social media manager had a finger in the pie, or it was the Pope himself, not all believers felt there was something wrong in the highest-profile cleric purportedly liking an image of an attractive woman, especially given Francis' quite democratic mindset.

    Brazilian model Natalia Garibotto feels "blessed" after the head of the Catholic Church, Pope Francis, reportedly gave a "like" to a recent picture of hers on Instagram. Quite a few netizens, subscribed to the Pontiff's IG page, provided visual proof – what seems to be a screenshot featuring Francis' account @franciscus, among thousands of others that also liked the social media post where Ms Garabotto almost completely bared her butt posing in a skimpy schoolgirl outfit.

    Despite the "like" no longer being there, 27-year-old Garibotto believes that "at least" she is "going to heaven", with reactions to the alleged endorsement, be it a slip of the thumb or a genuine approval by the official papal account, already pouring in for several days now.

    "My mom may hate my a** pics but the pope be [double-tapping]", she shared with Barstool Sports, apparently unable to conceal her joy. However, not all netizens took the controversial episode in their stride.

    The more pious ones felt quite uneasy about the reported "like" and rushed to offer their "thoughts and prayers" to the Pontiff.

    Yet, some believed the "like" was real and there would hardly be anything wrong with it, especially given the Pope's recently voiced take on sexual life. One even cheekily suggested the Pope could have thus appreciated something other than "the subject matter or content" of the post. Whatever the case, the Vatican has yet to comment on the matter.

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    Публикация от Natalia Garibotto (@team.natagata)

    "The pleasure of eating is there to keep you healthy by eating, just like sexual pleasure is there to make love more beautiful and guarantee the perpetuation of the species", Pope Francis said earlier this year.

    Last month, the Argentinian-born Pontiff endorsed same-sex civil unions, prompting a broad discussion of whether Francis, aged 83, would ultimately give even more liberties to Catholic believers and perhaps reconsider his take on masturbation and other "sinful" acts.

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