Life of Patrons
Interview with Fabrizio Arengi Bentivoglio
President of Patrons of Bambino Gesù
Patrons of Bambino Gesù
at Clinton Global Initiative
His Holiness Pope Francis and
President Clinton discuss about
Bambino Gesù Children's Hospital
His Holiness Pope Francis
discusses about Climate Change,
Immigration and Childcare
Full version of the video:
Full version of the video in spanish:
Pope's Letter about
the Establishment of Patrons
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
First of all, I would like to greet the managers, the members and all the guests of NIAF, the National Italian American Foundation, that this year celebrates its 47th anniversary, and that is particularly sensitive to supporting solidarity and charitable initiatives.
On this occasion, I would like to present you a project that is very meaningful to me – a project dedicated to children and their health.
You know Italy very well because your roots are there – and mine too (you know that my grandfather was from Piedmont) – and in Italy, in Rome, near the Vatican, there is a very special hospital: Bambino Gesù Children’s Hospital.
It is an ancient hospital, with over 150 years of history, with a feature making it special; it is known worldwide as the Hospital of the Pope, but this is not what makes it “unique” to me. It is unique because it combines the important and continuous scientific research, aimed at the treatment of children, and the free provision of care to those in need. We may say that it is a hospital where science and hospitality are inseparable.
Two years ago, in the middle of the Covid emergency, I baptized two Siamese twin girls, Ervina and Prefina, connected by the head, who were separated by Bambino Gesù doctors through a very complex surgery. They came from Central Africa, where they would surely have died, and now are doing very well. After over a year of study and three-dimensional simulations, with a preparation including a team of psychologists, the surgeons were able to separate them.
Three other pairs of twins coming from poor countries underwent the same procedure.
Care was provided for free, without asking for anything.
Bambino Gesù Children’s Hospital does not take care only of such complex cases; it also manages an increasing number of pediatric patients who, in these terrible months of war, come to Bambino Gesù Hospital: over a thousand young Ukrainian patients who fled their country with their parents and families.
This is why this Hospital is unique, because Bambino Gesù is a concrete sign of the charity and mercy of the Pope and of the Church.
In the field of health, today more than ever, the first and most concrete form of charity is science, the ability to treat, which however must be offered to everyone, to the poor and the marginalized, and not only to those who can afford it.
It takes resources and humanity, science and “closeness”: that’s the perspective of the President of the Hospital, Dr. Mariella Enoc, who is able to balance the books while taking care of and treating those who are in need.
Why am I telling you this?
Because America is known as the land where your dreams can come true. When you, your parents, and your grandparents arrived, you had a dream too. And if tonight you are celebrating the 47th anniversary of NIAF, it means that your dream came true, at least a part of it.
The dream of Bambino Gesù Hospital, the dream of the Pope, is to help bring science and humanity to all children with very severe diseases who need to be treated.
To this end, the Hospital has established the Foundation “Patrons of Bambino Gesù”: to help the Hospital raise awareness about its mission also in the United States, and to support its projects.
Unfortunately, today many incurable diseases still exist, but we know for sure that there are no incurable children. If they cannot be cured, they can be taken care of; we can warm their heart and their parents’ heart with closeness, tenderness and sharing.
This is the hallmark of Bambino Gesù Hospital; this is its dream, which can also become your dream.
I thank you, and please don’t forget to pray for me.
The Presentation of the Foundation
in the United States
Two events were organized in which OPBG representatives presented the new Foundation in detail and in the presence of Italian institutions and potential American based donors. The first was held in New York City on October 26th, at the Italian Consulate.
The second presentation event took place on October 29th in Washington DC, where, during the gala dinner organized for the 47th anniversary of NIAF (National Italian American Foundation), hospital representatives illustrated the history and purpose of the Hospital Foundation.
The evening ended with President Enoc delivering the letter from the Holy Father to NIAF.