Catholic Transcript Magazine of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Hartford Connecticut

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

20180105T1020 13478 CNS POPE VISIT HOSPITAL 800Pope Francis greets a patient during an unannounced visit Jan. 5 to children at the Palidoro Bambino Gesu Hospital, in Fiumicino, outside Rome. (CNS photo/L'Osservatore Romano)FIUMICINO, Italy (CNS) -- On the eve of Epiphany, when most Italian children wake up to find gifts and candy, Pope Francis visited a pediatric hospital outside Rome.

The pope arrived at the Palidoro Bambino Gesu Hospital at about 3 p.m. Jan. 5 and visited the various wards where about 120 children are receiving treatment, according to the Vatican press office.

The pope greeted the children and "exchanged some words of comfort with the parents who are caring for their children in their tiring and painful trials," the statement said.

Visiting the hospital, Pope Francis was "continuing the experience of the Mercy Fridays," visits he made to hospitals, orphanages and other care facilities during the 2015-16 Year of Mercy.