A nude model resembling the Virgin Mary on the cover of the Mexican edition of Playboy magazine, published only days before a major Mexican festival dedicated to the mother of Jesus, prompted the company’s U.S. headquarters on Friday to apologize.
The magazine, which hit newsstands on Dec. 1 as ceremonies began leading to Friday’s pilgrimage to the Mexico City shrine of the Virgin of Guadalupe, showed a model wearing nothing but a white cloth over her head and breasts.
She is standing in front of a stained glass window with the cover line, “We Love You, Maria” in Spanish. The model’s name is Maria Florencia Onori.
The Virgin of Guadalupe, said to have appeared to a sixteenth century Indian peasant, is Mexico’s most revered Roman Catholic figure and the annual pilgrimage to the Mexico City basilica dedicated to her is one of the world’s largest religious events.