Pope Francis has a drone of his very own


By Abby Ohlheiser

A group of students from a Jesuit school in Rome presented Pope Francis with a drone of his very own Thursday, continuing what has become a delightful tradition of giving the pope cool gifts.

And this drone isn’t just any drone: It’s tricked out with the colors of the Vatican flag (yellow and white) and bears the papal emblem. Francis was meeting Thursday with the Community of Christian Life in Italy and the Missionary League for Italian Students.

The drone is supposed to represent “the values of technology in the service of man,” according to a statement from the school released to the Italian news agency ANSA. “Drones have proved useful to check the condition of structures [in the earthquake zone in Nepal] and study paths from bringing relief to people who need this in remote villages.”

It’s unclear what the pontiff plans to do with the drone, but the same could be said about many of the gifts he has been given.

Francis received all sorts of unusual things for his birthday in December, including a giant Looney Tunes card, some maté and a group tango.

People also like to give the pope expensive gifts. The Vatican put some of those gifts up for auction in January — including a Fiat, a designer hat, an espresso machine and a bicycle — to raise money for the poor.

In March, a Naples pizzeria chased down the popemobile to hand the pontiff a custom pie, shortly after Francis said in an interview that he would love “to go out one day, without being recognized, and go to a pizzeria for a pizza.” One of the pizzeria’s owners later told ABC News that Francis told him he’d eat the pizza later.

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