VATICAN CITY - Thirteen-year-old Veronica Cantero Burroni fulfilled a dream on Wednesday, when she got to see Pope Francis, who offered her a warm embrace at the end of his general audience.
Veronica, who turns 14 this month, lives in the Argentine city of Campana and gets around in a wheel chair due to a neurological disease. However, this has not stopped her from becoming a writer and publishing five books.
One of them is entitled "The Thief of Shadows." On May 30 in Naples, it was awarded the "2016 Elsa Morante Award for young people," one of the most prestigious literary honors in Italy.
Speaking to the Argentine daily La Nación, Veronica said she told the Pope "that I loved him a lot. And he told me that they had told him that I was very good at writing and asked me to pray for him. And through his embrace, I realized that he loved me a lot."
She also gave him a copy of her fifth book with a special dedication.
"At an encounter with young people in Cuba, he said that all of us have an eye of flesh and an eye of glass: the eye of flesh to see the reality of what surrounds us, and the eye of glass to dream with. And so I dedicated the book to him, telling him I was thanking him for teaching me to use the eye of glass because this for me was a dream that I was living, as well as using the eye of flesh," she related.
Veronica was accompanied by her mom, Cecilia Burroni, who said that "what's beautiful is that her physical limitations don't stop her."