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On feast of his namesake, pope donates ventilators to 3 countries


Kathleen N. Hattrup - published on 04/24/20

Born Jorge Bergoglio, the Holy Father celebrates his name day on St. George's feast, April 23.

Pope Francis – Jorge Mario Bergoglio – celebrates his “name day” on the feast of St. George (Jorge) each April 23. This year as well, the pope sought to give gifts instead of receiving them.

Ventilators and medical equipment, masks, and protective gear for doctors and nurses were sent to a number of hospitals in three countries, on behalf of the pope in honor of his name day.

One hospital is in the city of Suceava, Romania, which has seen an outbreak of coronavirus: Five latest-generation ventilators were dispatched there. Another two will go to a hospital in Lecce, Italy, and three more to Madrid, Spain.

It is “a beautiful sign that falls on this particular day when the Holy Father does not receive a gift but gives it to others,” said Cardinal Konrad Krajewski, the Papal Almoner, speaking of the imminent delivery, which he calls “an embrace of the Pope in a difficult situation for the whole world.”


Read more:
Why you should celebrate your name day

Romania is experiencing a real emergency in the small town of Suceava, where the ventilators will go.  Almost 25% of the cases in Romania are there. The town is located in the poorest region of the country and the European Union. In Romania there have more than 500 victims, and almost 10,000 people are infected.

The ventilators and all the equipment donated by the pope will be transported by a flight that will also carry a team of 11 Romanian doctors and six health workers, sent on April 7 by the government of Bucharest to a hospital in Lecce to work alongside Italy in its difficult battle against the coronavirus.

The three ventilators in Madrid will be taken care of by the Nunciature which, together with Cardinal Carlos Osoro Sierra, Archbishop of the Spanish capital, will bring them to the hospitals most in need.

Two ventilators destined for the hospital in Lecce will be delivered by Cardinal Krajewski himself. On the journey back to the Vatican, the Papal Almoner will stop in Naples to receive medicine for the poor of Rome.

A few days before Easter, two ventilators, along with medical devices for doctors and nurses, and also Easter eggs, arrived directly from the Vatican at the Cotugno hospital in Naples.

Last year on his name day, Pope Francis donated Rosary wreaths made for WYD in Panama to young people in the archdiocese of Milan, and a 20-kilo chocolate egg to the poor at the Caritas center at Termini Station in Rome.


Read more:
St. Martha: Homemaker, devoted sister, dragon-slayer

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