When the Cassidy family traveled to Rome to see the Pope, they weren't expecting to come home to find a miracle.
Last year, Scott and Lynn brought their family, including 3-month-old daughter Ave, to the Vatican. Sadly, Ave was born with Down Syndrome, hearing complications, eye problems and two holes in her heart.
One rainy day in 2014, the Cassidys waited outside the barricade in St. Peter's Square to catch a glimpse of the Pope riding by in the Pope-mobile.
What happened next was beyond their wildest dreams.
Scott held baby Ave up in the air and a secret service person took her to see the Pope. "The Pope asked my husband, 'How old is she? What's her name?' He told (the Pope) she had two holes in her heart. When we got back home in May, we went back to the cardiologist for a check-up. One of the holes was completely closed and one was half the size," Lynn told USA Today.
This photo hangs on the family's wall; notice where the Pope's hand rests. Although children with Down Syndrome are often born with holes in their heart that heal over time, "The Pope healed our baby's heart," Lynn said.
Since her incredible encounter with the Pope, Ave has undergone two eye surgeries and received hearing aids in both ears. But we're happy to report she has a healthy, happy heart.
If Lynn ever gets the chance to speak with Pope Francis again, she'd tell him, "Thank you for spreading the word that all life is precious. Even life that seems like it might have struggles like hers. She is as precious as anyone else. We just thank you for spreading that message, because people need to hear that."
via USA Today