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San Antonio Archbishop Pays Christmas Visit To Christus Santa Rosa

While children all over San Antonio spent Christmas at home with family, others spent the holiday in the hospital. It’s not the ideal place for a solemn celebration, so San Antonio’s Archbishop Gustavo Garcia-Siller brought a little Christmas spirit to them.

Through prayer, Archbishop Gustavo, as he likes to be called, went from room to room at Christus Santa Rosa Children’s Hospital downtown.

“To come and visit with the little ones is a privilege, and it means a lot to them, but especially on this day; thinking about Jesus the child, who was born to be the light of the world, hope of the world, it’s natural to think about the little ones,” he said.

Consuelo Rangel and her 17 year old son, Gilbert were among the families the Archbishop met. Gilbert was in a head-on collision with a tractor trailer in Carrizo Springs and is healing from his injuries.

“Oh it’s a blessing,” said Rangel. “It’ll comfort my son and all his pains.”

Gilbert said the Archbishop’s message is comforting.

“He gave me a sense of more hope,” Gilbert said.

Vickie Squires, director of Children’s Life at the hospital, said nurses were discharging as many children as possible to make it home in time for Christmas Day.

For those who must remain, this visit is a glimmer of something bigger than sickness.

“My job is to make sure that joy comes to the hospital on Christmas Eve,” said Squires. “Think of the perspective of a mom or dad. It’s horrible. We are blessed not to be here.”

Ryan Loyd was Texas Public Radio's city beat and political reporter. He left the organization in December, 2014.