An homage to the original Holy Diver? Maybe a White Sabbath celebration?
Or is Pope Francis a secret heavy metal aficionado?
Some of the most curious images of the pope's recent tour of the Philippines show him flashing what to most music fans is instantly recognizable as the "devil's sign." This ancient hand signal is achieved by extending the index and pinky fingers and retracting the ring and middle fingers (the thumb is optional--Pope Francis leaves it outstretched, as in the Hawaiian shaka sign).
The "sign of the horns" goes back many centuries. It appears in medieval manuscripts and it's a fixture of folkloric cultures around the Mediterranean. Italian families in particular use it to ward off the evil eye, and through one of rock's most successful Italian Americans,
So what was Pope Francis doing flashing this sign last week in the Philippines?
The Associated Press caption helps clarify matters: "Pope Francis and Manila Archbishop