UK news anchor’s flub declaring Pope Francis dead lights up Twitter like a Christmas tree

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A British news anchor has become internationally known for all the wrong reasons after she slipped up by saying that Pope Francis was dead during a Christmas day broadcast, a major blunder that will forever live in infamy in the annals of fake news.

Kylie Pentelow of ITV was in the middle of delivering a recap on the Pope’s annual Christmas message and his call for global vaccinations when she briefly drifted off into a Biden-style brain fog, announcing the death of the 85-year-old religious leader.

Pentelow was moving right along, reporting that the pontiff said that “vaccines should be made available to those most in need,” then said, “his death was announced,” before catching herself, saying ‘uh, excuse me,” and moving on with her reporting of the news.


Twitter lit up like a Christmas tree following Pentelow’s embarrassing fumble.

Prior to ITV’s inaccurate report of his demise, Pope Francis spoke to a crowd of several thousand at St. Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican as well as to a global audience, lamenting the “pandemic of loneliness” that has gripped the world since the outbreak of COVID and also calling for peace, citing several ongoing conflicts, specifically in Syria and Yemen.

“In this time of pandemic…Our capacity for social relationships is sorely tried; there is a growing tendency to withdraw, to do it all by ourselves, to stop making an effort to encounter others and do things together,” he said.


“On the international level too, there is the risk of avoiding dialogue, the risk that this complex crisis will lead to taking shortcuts rather than setting out on the longer paths of dialogue,” he added. “Yet only those paths can lead to the resolution of conflicts and to lasting benefits for all.”

The pope cited “a great number of conflicts, crises and disagreements” being witnessed around the world.

“These never seem to end; by now we hardly even notice them. We have become so used to them that immense tragedies are now being passed over in silence,” Francis said, which is when he mentioned Syria and Yemen, among others.

As for Pentelow, it’s possible she mixed up Pope Francis with Archbishop Desmond Tutu, who led the moral crusade against apartheid in South Africa who DID die — the 90-year-old’s passing in Cape Town was announced on Sunday by South African President Cyril Ramaphosa.

Ramaphosa called Tutu “a patriot without equal; a leader of principle and pragmatism who gave meaning to the biblical insight that faith without works is dead,” according to NPR.


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