The Pope’s message of charity was lost in translation on Sunday, as he accidentally muddled “caso” (“case”) with “cazzo” (“fuck”).
“If each one of us does not amass riches only for oneself, but half for the service of others, in this fuck [pause], in this case the providence of God will become visible through this gesture of solidarity,” he told followers amassed in St Peter’s Square.
Although a flustered Pope quickly corrected his error, the pontiff’s gaffe was quickly published on YouTube and has since garnered tens of thousands of hits.
But despite swearing from the window of the capital of the Catholic Church, the ever-popular Pope received a warm response.
“He is also a man!” wrote one YouTube user, while another posted “Great Pope Francis, I love you!”
“He wanted to say, ‘in this case’ - it’s a simple mistake made by a foreigner reading Italian, nothing more,” one Italian wrote.
Months of preaching about forgiveness appear to have saved the pontiff from being thrown to the linguistic wolves, allowing him to focus on his key message of the day.
Reflecting on Russian troops being deployed in Ukraine, the Pope made “a heartfelt appeal to the international community to support any initiative in favour of dialogue.”
Watch a video of the Pope's gaffe: