There, “besides the care of the body, the care of the heart takes place.”
In a letter dated July 15 – the day after he was released from Gemelli Hospital – Pope Francis expressed gratitude to the board of directors and the medical staff who took care of him during his hospitalization for colon surgery.
“Upon returning from hospitalization, I feel the desire to address a grateful and affectionate thought to you and, through you, to all those who form the big Gemelli Hospital family,” the Pope said. He said at the hospital he received a “fraternal reception and warm care” that made him feel at home.
The Pope’s surgery was July 4. He returned to the Vatican early on July 14.
Care of the heart
Pope Francis noted that the Gemelli hospital is a place where thousands come every day with their expectations and concerns. There, “besides the care of the body, the care of the heart takes place.”
The Holy Father said he prays that care will continue, “through an integral and attentive care of the person, capable of instilling consolation and hope in moments of trial.”
Returning home, he said, “I carry in my heart, so many faces, stories and situations of suffering.”
Wounded flesh of Jesus
The Holy Father highlighted that the job of health care workers is not only delicate and demanding, but is also “a work of mercy” through which the sick “come into contact with the wounded flesh of Jesus.”
“I am grateful to have seen it, to cherish it within me, and to bring it to the Lord,” the Pope said.
Concluding, Pope Francis reiterated his gratitude to the hospital and staff, and imparted an Apostolic blessing on the president of the board of directors, and all who are part of the family of the Gemelli Hospital.