(Vatican Radio) On Saturday, May 27th, Pope Francis will travel to the northern Italian city of Genoa for a one-day apostolic visit.
One of the highlights of the day will undoubtedly be represented by his meeting with sick children and their families in the “Giannina Gaslini” Paediatric Hospital.
Awaiting Francis’ visit, many of the little patients have been busy preparing small gifts and messages, but meanwhile, the Pope himself decided to surprise them ahead of time with a personal greeting.
Listen to the report by Linda Bordoni:
Linking-up live via telephone to a parish radio in Genoa that broadcasts a Wednesday weekly programme especially dedicated to the children’s hospital, Pope Francis told the little patients that it is with joy that he is preparing to be with them.
“Dear children of the Gaslini Hospital in Genoa, I greet you all with affection” he said.
The Pope said he is coming to be close to them, to listen to them, and to bring the caress of Jesus.
“He is always close to us especially when we are in difficulty and in need. He always gives us trust and hope” he said.
Pope Francis concluded his call with assurances that he is praying for the sick children and their families, and as he always does, he asked them to pray for him!
Established in 1931, the Istituto Giannina Gaslini is a tertiary level paediatric hospital affiliated with the University of Genoa. It is considered one of the foremost children’s hospital in Europe and it is formally recognized as a Scientific Institute for Research, Hospitalization and Healthcare.