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Pope Francis ‘asks for statue of himself to be taken down’

The statue by sculptor Fernando Pugliese (CNS)

Pope Francis has asked for a new statue of him that has been erected in the gardens of Buenos Aires cathedral be removed.

According to reports, the Pontiff, who was archbishop of the Argentine capital until his election to the papacy in March, telephoned officials at the Metropolitan Cathedral of Buenos Aires to ask for the statue to be taken down.

Francis is said to have made the request because he is “against the cult of personality”.

The life-size statue was installed about 10 days ago and many local people have been posing for photographs with it.