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Former papal palace Provides Hope and Shelter to Rome’s Displaced

In his Christmas Eve homily this season, Pope Francis stated the vacation should remind individuals to do what they could for people in need. It is a concept being put into practice only a stone’s throw away from the Vatican – in which a homeless shelter opened by Pope Francis a season is providing hope and shelter to its occupants.

A hot meal and a secure shelter for the evening. Life hasn’t been kind to such folks, but today they can enjoy the relaxation and the beauty of the 17th-century imperial palace at S. Peter’s Square in Rome.

“Many poor individuals have remained here and many finally found their path, their residence; frequently, some returned to their own families “

This transition to a different life is much more significant now, at the COVID-19 age, particularly for the displaced without healthcare.

“In this instance, it’s quite tricky to find access into the health system due to the pandemic, this aspect is much more important than ever,” says doctor Claudia Palazzolo who volunteers in the Migliori Palace. “They’re frightened of visiting the hospital and lots of hospital services are shut. Therefore, we’re ready to prevent unnecessary access to emergency rooms, when potential.”

“Regrettably, we live in this circumstance, in which all hospitals are in reality dedicated to Covid,” states Director Carlo Santoro. “Over the past month, three people died alone in the road, only here round the corner and, not one of them due to Covid, but since they were left alone”

“That is like home for me,” says Mario Brezza, who’s residing in the shelter. “You can eat, sleep, wash if not, where could you go? Let us thank the Pope, who opened this location this past year. Otherwise, where would all 32 people be today?”

Folks like Mario Brezza say they have discovered a family here and now they’ll enjoy Christmas dinner together.

“Not just with the bad but it’s a really powerful bond for us also since it’s a family reunion for people who don’t own a household, for people who’d remain exclusively on Christmas day.”