VATICAN CITY – An Argentine priest hitched a ride on Pope Francis’ popemobile during the pontiff’s general audience in St. Peter’s Square on Wednesday after the pope recognized him in the crowd.
The pope thought he had heard a familiar voice when someone shouted out “Holy Father, Happy New Year” as he was driven through a crowd of thousands.
He turned and spotted Father Fabian Baez, a priest he knew from his days as archbishop of Buenos Aires. He asked his driver to stop the popemobile and gestured to the priest to come out of the crowd, video footage showed.
The pontiff then invited him to hop on the white vehicle and the priest joined him for the rest of the ride through the crowd.
The two embraced when Baez boarded and the pope was heard telling him, “This photo is going to go around the world”.
(Reporting by Philip Pullella; Editing by Sonya Hepinstall)