(Rome) -- Pope Benedict the 16th visited children at a hospital in Rome Wednesday to help them celebrate the eve of the Catholic Feast of the Epiphany.
The children waved yellow-and-white Vatican flags and sang hymns to welcome the 83-year-old Pope to the Agostino Gemelli Polyclinic.
The children also gave him drawings and small puppets that they had created just for him.
The Pope showered the children with gifts and offered prayers that they might be cured of their illnesses.
He also blessed the hospital's new care unit for children born with spina bifida, which causes improper formation of the vertebrae.
The holiday of the Epiphany marks the day when Catholics believe the three wise men brought gifts to baby Jesus.
(Copyright 2011 by VERTEXNews/Newsroom Solutions)