Pope wearing puffy white jacket


Pope looks dope in puffer coat—thanks to AI

The Pope was briefly cool again.


David Covucci


Posted on Mar 27, 2023   Updated on Mar 28, 2023, 9:54 am CDT

When Pope Francis ascended to the top of the Catholic Church in 2013, he was considered a breath of fresh air after the revanchist papacy of Benedict XVI.

People were so excited about his progressive attitudes toward church dogma and his desire to leave the confines of the Vatican that he was dubbed, in the early days of the viral internet, the “Cool Pope.”

At one point, he was even referred to as the “biggest star on the internet.”

The sheen has somewhat worn off, as the church has continued to be buffeted by scandals during his reign, but fear not, Cool Pope is back.

Over the weekend, a dripped-out photo of Pope Francis—in an oversized puffer jacket—started making the rounds. The high collar, belted waist, exposed jewelry, and stunning bone china fabric made the internet all reach the same conclusion.

Pope Francis is swagged out.


The images went across numerous platforms, from Twitter to Instagram to TikTok, calling him the “Balenciaga Pope.”

“The boys from Brooklyn could only hope,” wrote one TikToker.

@traceyvanderpump Are you from New York even?! #popefrancis #pufferjacket #prettygirlswalk ♬ Pretty Girls Walk – Big Boss Vette

But it appears the Pope’s winter wear exists solely in the eyes of artificial intelligence.

The work was made by Midjourney, a popular AI photography app, which creates hyperrealistic images based on prompts.

The specific image of the Pope in a puffer was first shared on the Midjourney subreddit, although the user behind it appears to have been suspended.

Nonetheless, people still couldn’t get over just how sharp the computer-generated Pope looked.

“Pope Francis should make the papal puffer jacket a reality,” said one Twitter user.

It’s not the only AI photo to dupe the internet this week. On Tuesday, computer-generated images of former President Donald Trump being “arrested” also went viral.

Trump has not yet been arrested, although an indictment over a bribe scandal could come this week.

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*First Published: Mar 27, 2023, 9:01 am CDT