Pope treats Rome's homeless to swim at beach, then a pizza

Pope treats Rome’s homeless to swim at beach, then a pizza

Pope treats Rome’s homeless to swim at beach, then a pizza

Pope Francis smiles as he browses through drawings at the Vatican, Thursday, Aug. 11, 2016. Pope Francis has had lunch with a group of Syrian refugees who were brought to Italy from the Greek island of Lesbos thanks to the pope’s intercession. The Vatican said Thursday that the pope brought toys and other gifts for the children, who, in turn, gave him a selection of their drawings. (Credit: L'Osservatore Romano/Pool Photo via AP.)

If you're homeless in Rome this summer, you can get a trip to the beach and a pizza courtesy of Pope Francis, whose personal almsgiver drives roughly ten people at a time out to the beach on Sunday afternoons -- complete with swimsuits and beach towels, all on the pontiff.

VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis this summer is treating dozens of Rome’s homeless to a day at the beach and dinner in a pizzeria on the way back.

The pontiff’s almsgiver, Polish Archbishop Konrad Krajewski, told the La Stampa daily he drives a van with 10 people to a beach near Rome for a dip in the sea, sunbathing and then pizza. The Vatican supplies the swimsuits and beach towels.

Krajewski told Italian state radio Sunday the afternoon outings reflect the homeless’ “desire for normality” in their lives.

Many of them live near Vatican City, where, at Francis’ direction, showers and barbers have been set up on the edge of St. Peter’s Square for their use.

Aided by Swiss Guards, the almsgiver also distributes hot meals to homeless people at Italian train stations.

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