Ain’t no party like a papal pizza party! Of course, Pope Francis knows this. The popular pontiff celebrated his 81st birthday this weekend and had epic pie made in his honor. It was over a dozen feet long and big enough to make a Ninja Turtle drool.

He was joined by a group of kids who receive services from Dispensario Santa Marta, a Vatican pediatric clinic, and he insisted they “eat all four meters (13 feet),” saying it would make them grow. Now this is the kind of godly advice we can abide by! They also helped him blow out the lone candle, which of course was placed in the pizza.

In Italy, pizza is often baked in the long form, especially when made for special occasions. The rectangular shape makes it easier to serve large groups of people.

This mega-pizza is totally on-brand for the cool pope (move over Jude Law) as his love of tomato pie is well-documented. Pope Francis fed over 1,500 homeless people pizza to celebrate Mother Teresa’s canonization as a saint. That’s the kind of upgrade from proverbial bread that Jesus Himself would have been proud of.

In an interview with Mexican broadcaster Televisa, Pope Francis acknowledged that the only thing that bothered him about being pope was constantly being noticed in public. He said, “The one thing that I would like is to go out, without anyone recognizing me, and go to a pizzeria to eat pizza.”  Same, Pope, same.

The official Vatican Cookbook, which was put together by the Pontifical Swiss Guard even includes a pizza recipe in Pope Francis’ honor. It also has an Argentinian twist (it’s made with faina flatbread) since that’s his native country.

There’s no telling where The Pope’s pizza obsession will lead next. We’ll just have to wait until he turns 82 to find out.

Header image courtesy of Getty Images.

Jessica is an Associate Editor at Chowhound. Follow her on Twitter @volume_knob for updates on snacks and cats.
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