On May 28, Facebook profile სამყარო სამყარო (World World) uploaded several photos depicting Pope Francis. One of them shows a young Pope wearing a T-shirt promoting the English rock band Black Sabbath. Another photo depicts Adolf Hitler with a young boy; the photo is accompanied by another photo of a boy claiming to show Pope Francis. The next photo depicts Pope Francis and a papal ferula with two snake figures and a cross between them. Such design is compared to Satan, while the photo has a caption reading ‘the Roman Catholic is Satanic.’
The post contains visual photo manipulation, because 1. Young Pope Francis does not wear a Black Sabbath T-shirt, but rather the photo has been photoshopped; 2. The young boy posing with Adolf Hitler is not Pope Francis, because the photo was taken in 1930, while Pope Francis was born in 1936; 3. The papal ferula with snake figures belongs not to Pope Francis, but to the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I, while a symbol of a snake is frequently seen in Christian culture.
The photo manipulations aim at spreading a conspiracy theory about “Satanic links” of Pope Francis and discrediting him.
- Young Pope Francis does not wear a Black Sabbath T-shirt
One of the photos uploaded by “სამყარო სამყარო” depicts young Pope Francis wearing black clothes with the English rock band Black Sabbath logo.
After taking a close look at the photo, you will see that Pope Francis is not wearing a Black Sabbath T-shirt, because a white clerical collar and a black cassock worn by Catholic clergy is clearly seen in the photo.
The TinEye reverse image search results have confirmed that the image had been photoshopped and the Pope’s cassock actually has no Black Sabbath logo. A caption to the photo uploaded on gettyimages reads that the photo was taken in 1969, when Pope Francis was a student at the Theological Faculty of San Miguel School.
Snopes, a fact-checking website, also verified the authenticity of the photo, noting that it began circulating online in 2015, while a number of sources – either seriously or jokingly – have claimed that the referenced photograph is authentic and Pope Francis used to be a metal head.
- Hitler’s photo was taken in 1930, when Pope Francis was not yet born
Another photo uploaded on Facebook depicts Adolf Hitler and a young boy; the photo is accompanied by another photo of a boy claiming to show Pope Francis.
The original photo uploaded on gettyimages is accompanied by a caption, reading that Nazi dictator Adolph Hitler poses with a young member of the Nazi Youth. The latter’s name, however, is not specified. The photo was taken in 1930, while Pope Francis was born on December 17, 1936. Thus, the boy posing with Hitler could not be Pope Francis.
The same photo has been used on the cover of the book “The Rise of Adolf Hitler” by Annette Dufner.
- The papal ferula with snake figures belongs not to Pope Francis, but to the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I
One of the photos in the photo collage uploaded on Facebook depicts Pope Francis and a papal ferula with two snake figures and a cross between them; the other photo depicts Satan with a figure similar to the papal ferule. The photo has a caption reading ‘the Roman Catholic is Satanic.’
In fact, the photo was taken in 2014 and it depicts Pope Francis together with the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I. The papal ferula with snake figures belongs not to Pope Francis, but to the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I. The interview published on americamagazine.org is accompanied by the photo clearly showing that just Bartholomew I is carrying the ferula.
Bartholomew I is carrying the same ferula in other photos as well.
As for the links between a snake symbol and Satan, it is a matter of interpretation. However, it is noteworthy that a snake takes an important place in Christian symbolism that is highlighted in a number of biblical episodes.
One more photo accompanying the post is spread without any caption, but foreign-language sources write about this photo that it depicts Pope Francis together with David Rockefeller and John Rothschild. In fact, the photo was taken in Jerusalem in 2014 and it depicts Pope Francis kissing the hands of Holocaust survivors. PolitiFact and Reuters have also fact-checked the post.
Various pieces of disinformation and conspiracy theories have been spread about Pope Francis previously. See details in Myth Detector’s article:
What Scheme was Used to Spread Conspiracy Theories about Pope Francis and Chips?
Archive link: სამყარო სამყარო
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