One woman was planning on having an abortion, until she received a phone call from Pope Francis that changed her, and her baby’s life, forever.

This is the story of Anna from Arezzo in Central Italy, a young woman who lost her job and decided to move to Rome. There she found out she was pregnant by a unbeknownst-to-her married man. When she told him she was with child, he refused to acknowledge his paternity and instead began to pressure her. To her, the only option she believed she had was to have an abortion.

She made plans to have an abortion but before doing so wrote a simple letter telling her story and slipped it into an envelope addressed to “Holy Father Pope Francis, Vatican City, Rome.” Not expecting a response, a few days later her phone rang with the most unexpected person on the other line: His Holiness Pope Francis, returning her letter.

His first words were that of comfort for the troubling situation her and her baby were in:

“Hello Anna, this is Pope Francis. I read your letter. We Christians must never lose our hope. A child is a gift of God, a sign of Providence.”

At first Anna didn’t know who was calling, the number was unfamiliar with a caller ID of Rome. But upon hearing Pope Francis she said “his words filled my heart with joy, he told me that I had been very courageous and strong for my baby.”

In that very moment she told Pope Francis that her true desire was not to go through with her plans, but instead have her child baptized as soon as they were born. However, she was worried it would not be possible as she was divorced but her fears were quickly washed away as Pope Francis told her:

“I am convinced that you will not have problems finding a spiritual father. If not, know that there is always me.”

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