O'Reilly meets with Pope Francis in Vatican's VIP section: report

O'Reilly meets with Pope Francis in Vatican's VIP section: report
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Embattled Fox News host Bill O'Reilly briefly met with Pope Francis at the Vatican on Wednesday, according to a New York Times report.

The report says O'Reilly, who was in a VIP section in St. Peter’s Square during the pontiff’s weekly general audience, shook hands with the religious leader as a Vatican newspaper photographer snapped a photo. 

The Times noted the "special section beside the stage holding the papal throne, where Mr. O’Reilly sat, is exclusive and entered only with special tickets distributed by the prefecture of the papal household, according to the Vatican press office."

Tens of thousands of worshipers fill the square for the weekly event.

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The Vatican had stated last week that no official audience with O’Reilly was scheduled.

The meeting comes on the same day as sources told New York Magazine that the 67-year-old O'Reilly is out at the network amid a sexual harassment scandal. The Times had earlier reported that O'Reilly settled with five female accusers for a total of $13 million.

According to Wednesday's New York Magazine report by Gabriel Sherman, top network execs are in talks about ending their relationship with O’Reilly “without causing collateral damage to the network.” The report added that the board of Fox News's parent company, 21st Century Fox, is set to meet Thursday about the matter.

The Drudge Report is linking to the New York Magazine story, an apparent wink of confirmation given proprietor Matt Drudge’s connections to Fox News.