Pope visits sick children on eve of Epiphany

Pope visits sick children on eve of Epiphany

Pope visits sick children on eve of Epiphany

Pope Francis greets a patient during an unannounced visit Jan. 5 to children at Bambino Gesu pediatric hospital in Palidoro, outside Rome. (Credit: CNS photo/L'Osservatore Romano.)

Pope Francis visited a pediatric hospital outside Rome on Friday.

FIUMICINO, Italy — 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.

(Credit: CNS photo/L’Osservatore Romano.)

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, 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.

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