Pope Francis gave a seriously ill Italian teenager the sacrament of confirmation at the Vatican over the weekend.
Giuseppe Chiolo, a 16-year-old Sicilian, has been undergoing cancer treatment the Meyer Hospital in Florence but traveled to the Vatican by ambulance on Saturday for an audience with the pope.
Chiolo had recently written a letter to Pope Francis asking to meet with him and was immediately invited for an appointment along with his family, the Vatican confirmed.
The pope hugged Chiolo before administering confirmation, then asked the boy to pray for him. Pope Francis has stressed that the Catholic Church must reach out to those who feel rejected or abandoned on the fringes of society, including the sick and disabled.
Story information from RNS
Photo Credit: Osservatore Romano via Reuters