Credit: Stefano Dal Pozzolo
This picture speaks a thousand words. How beautiful is this meeting between the Holy Father and the toddler. Check out the article below from CNA..
Rome, Italy, Jun 26, 2013 - The two year-old daughter of a Catholic News Agency bureau chief shared a brief but intimate greeting with Pope Francis on Sunday, leaving the girl and her father all smiles.
“She was right at home with the Holy Father,” Alan Holdren, the head of CNA's Rome bureau, said June 24.
Isabel accompanied Holdren who was covering a special trip for disadvantaged children organized by the Pontifical Council for Culture and Trenitalia, an Italian train service. The children were brought in on a high-speed train “for the extraordinary experience of leaving their home cities” to meet Pope Francis.
Holdren said he brought Isabel along with him on assignment knowing there would be other children there, but he never expected to behold “such an intimate encounter” with the Pope.
The pontiff came straight from the Sunday Angelus June 23 in St. Peter’s Square where thousands of pilgrims were gathered to pray with him from afar. At the train station, Holdren contrasted, “he met with just 250 children” and “another couple hundred” family members and volunteers.
“There was a real warmth and authenticity to it all and you could tell it was just what the little boys and girls needed.”
As the Pope emerged from the four-door sedan that brought him to the station, the small crowd gathered to form a “human corridor” for him to walk through as he met the children.
“He must have greeted every single one of the kids with a handshake, hug or kiss,” Holdren said. “You could tell he was in his element and being there with him and all those kids was really exciting.”
Soon, Holdren saw an opening in the line and took the opportunity to catch a closer glimpse of the Pope.
Isabel, her dad said, knows who the Holy Father is from praying for him as a family and being in St. Peter’s Square on the night of his election.
“Every time she passes St. Peter's she says 'Pope,' and points to the balcony where he first appeared,” Holdren said, adding that after his election Isabel “must have said 'Yay, Pope!' and clapped for weeks after.”
So when Pope Francis stopped right in front of Holdren and Isabel, “It was almost like seeing Grandpa.”
He reached out and touched Isabel's shoulder saying, “E' bella, eh!” or, “Ah, beautiful!” which is when Holdren said the girl broke into a smile.
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