The Sideshow

Pope Francis meets perhaps biggest, certainly cutest fan

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A child embraces Pope Francis as he speaks at St. Peter's Square. (Reuters)

A young boy wandered onto the stage at the Vatican this past weekend, hugging Pope Francis as he tried to give a speech.

The boy, who looks about 6, was originally sitting on the steps near the pope, while Francis listened to followers address him at the Vatican's Year of Faith Celebration.

Boys will be boys, and this one wanted a closer look at the man in the robe. So he wandered up to give a personal hello.

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But the boy's misadventure didn't end there. He kissed the cross around the Pope's neck.

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He refused to be ushered back to his seat, and as other people came on stage to greet the pope, the boy did his best to keep them from honing in on his new buddy.

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Eventually Francis convinced the child to take a seat. But he didn't go back to his spot on the steps. Instead, the rambunctious youngster sat on the pope's chair while he continued his speech, which led to this a-dor-a-ble photo that @pegobry posted on Twitter.

The interaction goes to show a) the pope has some serious cross-generational appeal and b) you can get away with a lot when you're a kid and don't know any better. 

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Pope Francis touches the head of a child as he speaks in St. Peter Square. (Reuters)

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