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'It was like being in Paradise. I felt only love': Terribly disfigured man who was held by Pope
The London Daily Mail ^ | November 18, 2013 | Hannah Roberts

Posted on 11/18/2013 7:20:58 PM PST by 2ndDivisionVet

The shockingly disfigured man, whose full-body tumours were lovingly kissed by the Pope, has been revealed as a 53-year-old Italian suffering from a rare genetic disease.

Vinicio Riva’s entire body has been ravaged by the growths, a symptom of neorofibramatosis, which is not contagious.

Earlier this month his picture shot round the world, when he was emotionally embraced by Pope Francis, at one of the pontiff’s weekly audiences in Rome.

The severely disabled man, who is shunned in the street, and has induced horror even in his doctors, has for the first time described the encounter, saying that being caressed by Francis was like ‘being in Paradise’.

He told Italian news magazine Panorama he was left speechless when Pope did not hesitate to touch him.

He said: ‘His hands were so soft. And his smile was so clear and open. But the thing that struck me most is that there has not been thinking about whether or not to hug me. I'm not contagious, but he did not know. But he just did it: he caressed me all over my face, and as he did I felt only love.

He recollected the meeting of a fortnight ago: 'First I kissed his hand while he, with the other hand, caressed my head and wounds. Then he drew me to him in a strong embrace, kissing my face.

'My head was against his chest his arms were wrapped around me. It lasted just over a minute, but to me it seemed like an eternity.'

Mr Riva was accompanied to the Vatican's St Peter's square by his aunt, Caterina and his younger sister Morena, who also suffers from a lesser form of the disease.

The meeting with Francis marked a new beginning for him.....

(Excerpt) Read more at ...

TOPICS: Catholic; Current Events; Ministry/Outreach
KEYWORDS: catholics; disease; illness; neorofibramatosis; popefrancis

1 posted on 11/18/2013 7:20:59 PM PST by 2ndDivisionVet
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Pope Francis reminds me of Mother Teresa. Pure love for the poor, disabled, and downtrodden. ♥ Dear Lord Jesus, please heal this afflicted man.
2 posted on 11/18/2013 7:38:18 PM PST by mlizzy ("If people spent an hour a week in Eucharistic Adoration, abortion would be ended." --Mother Teresa)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Interesting. I am at this moment watching THE ELEPHANT MAN on TCM. This also reminded me of my youth when, in 1956, I went to a carnival and saw THE OCTOPUS MAN, a normal man with huge tumors all over his body.

3 posted on 11/18/2013 7:57:57 PM PST by Ruy Dias de Bivar (Sometimes you need 7+ more ammo. LOTS MORE.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Didn't St. Peter heal many people who came to him? If the Pope is supposed to be his successor, why doesn't he also have the gifts Peter had? I ask this not to stir up contention but as a genuine question. Has any Pope actually healed someone during his life?
4 posted on 11/18/2013 8:08:44 PM PST by boatbums (God is ready to assume full responsibility for the life wholly yielded to Him.)
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To: boatbums
The ultimate Healer, of course, is Our Lord Jesus Christ, it is He Who answers prayers. His answer may have been 'no'. At least for now.

The answer to your question is yes, people have been healed by God through a successor of St Peter.

5 posted on 11/18/2013 9:28:00 PM PST by pbear8 (the Lord is my light and my salvation)
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To: boatbums

According to the article, the afflicted man says he is leaving his [emotional/spiritual] pain behind that day because of Francis’ actions. While it may not be as dramatic, it is probably just as important in some ways as a physical healing.

6 posted on 11/18/2013 9:47:43 PM PST by SweetAkitoRose (lurking since 1998)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
The sad fact is ?
There are those whom society shun that even those in the church reject.
Yes, this kind of treatment of the outcast and downtrodden are even treated in a bad way even in the church.
7 posted on 11/18/2013 11:01:18 PM PST by American Constitutionalist
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To: boatbums

That’s an interesting question. The way you word it seems you do know of intersessory prayer requirement of a saint after they passed. Some popes are canozied Saints. I can’t see why not. I do not recall exactly all. In 591 the whole city and one pope died from a plague. His successor Pope St Gregory the great told every one to pray and had a procession through the city. People were dying everywhere. At the end they saw St Michael sheathing his sword. It was believed to be a chastisement that ended. The Pope got every one together for prayers. The power of prayers in Christ.

8 posted on 11/19/2013 12:50:17 AM PST by johngrace (I am a 1 John 4! Christian- declared at every Sunday Mass , Divine Mercy and Rosary prayers!)
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To: boatbums
Hmmmm...I actually don't know. There are only 80 canonized popes (out of 265), and only for the ones who were canonized after Trent would there have been a requirement of two verifiable miracles obtained through their postmortem intercession. (Beatification just needs one miracle.)

I don't know if anybody has ever made a list of all the popes whose intercession was blessed by a miraculous healing, either during their lifetime on this earth, or after.

But one could look it up (I would if I were two people, and one of me had time!) The popes canonized after Trent would include:

Pope Adrian III
Pope Pius X
Pope John XXIII (beatified)
Pope John Paul II (beatified)
Pope Leo III
Pope Pius V
Pope Benedict II (beatified)
Pope Eugene II (beatified) (his tomb is famed for miraculous cures)
Pope Innocent V(beatified)
Pope Innocent II(beatified)
Pope Pius IX(beatified)
Pope Urban II (beatified)
Pope Urban V (beatified>

So those are the ones who had confirmed one or two miracles after their deaths. Don't know how many had miracles during their lifetimes.

I always tell my CIA students to remember that the really important, and really interesting people in Catholicism, are not the priests, nor the popes, but the saints.

9 posted on 11/19/2013 3:02:09 PM PST by Mrs. Don-o (Takes one to know one, and vice versa.)
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