Pope at Children's Hospital in Krakow: "I would like to draw near to all children who are sick"
As he does on all of his trips, while in Poland Pope Francis dedicated a special moment to those who need it most. With this applause he was received by 50 seriously ill children as he visited the Children's University Hospital in Krakow, a center that each year treats about 30,000 children, many terminally ill. Pope Francis delivered a brief speech to them, in which he wanted to show his closeness and proximity. POPE FRANCIS "I would like to draw near to all children who are sick, to stand at their bedside, and embrace them. I would like to listen to everyone here, even if for only a moment, and to be still before questions that have no easy answers. And to pray." He congratulated the hospital workers as an example of the culture of acceptance, as opposed to a culture of waste, especially toward the weakest people, like the sick. POPE FRANCIS "To serve with love and tenderness persons who need our help makes all of us grow in humanity. It opens before us the way to eternal life. Those who engage in works of mercy have no fear of death." The Pope also expressed hope that the patients are not only received by Christians, but are at the heart of society. POPE FRANCIS "This is the sign of true civility, human and Christian; making humans and the disadvantaged the center of social and political concern." After his speech, he gave his blessing and prayed a Hail Mary with the young patients. Afterwards, he tenderly greeted each child, some just babies in the arms of their parents. He stroked them smiling and also collected their letters and drawings for him. AC/MB CTV -JM -BN up:MB