Pope Francis was forced to slap the hand of an over-eager pilgrim after she grabbed him during a New Year's walk of St Peter's Square .

The incident, which was captured on video, began when the 83-year-old Pontiff was greeting worshippers, spending time to touch their outstretched hands.

The meet and greet started off normally enough.
The meet and greet started off normally enough.

One woman, who had been making the sign of the cross as Pope Francis approached, then grabbed his arm and pulled him towards her.

The grabby pilgrim waits her turn.
The grabby pilgrim waits her turn.
The Pope is forced to slap the woman to free himself from her grasp.
The Pope is forced to slap the woman to free himself from her grasp.

The forceful movement appeared painful for the Pope, who reacted by slapping her hand and pulling himself free, looking unhappy about the exchange.

Advertisement
Don't mess with the Pope.
Don't mess with the Pope.

The rest of the walk proceeded without incident, delighting tourists and Romans alike.