Speed Reads

All Dogs Go To Heaven?

Pope Francis didn't really say all dogs go to heaven

The widespread rumor Pope Francis suggested pets can get into heaven sounded too good to be true — and, in fact, it is. Though a prior pope did indeed make such a suggestion, Francis himself never did.

The confusion began last month when an Italian news story quoted Pope Paul VI as saying, decades ago, that people could see their pets in heaven, according to Religion News Service. But the article's misleading title got lost in translation and, like a game of telephone, the tale morphed on its way into English media to suggest Francis himself had uttered the quote.

The New York Times ran with the story last week, lending it an ostensible legitimacy in the U.S press. A corrected version of that story now includes a weaker, offhand remark about the afterlife and non-humans.