(CNN) — When 81-year old Cecilia Gimenez took it upon herself to restore a flaking century-old fresco of Jesus on her local church’s wall in Spain last year, she was treated to an international lambasting like only the Internet makes possible.

Her work, which would have looked more at home on a proud parent’s fridge door than on a house of worship, spawned memes, merchandise and even a Pinterest board of alternative “restorations.”

But things have taken a turn for the better, with the “Monkey Jesus” depiction, as it has become known, drawing tourists to the town of Borja in the thousands.

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