KATY, TX – A Katy mother said last week, in the middle of 30,000 people, her baby daughter was chosen to be blessed by Pope Francis in Vatican City.
"What are the chances?" Courtney Carter said.
Carter and her husband, and their 9-month-old baby, Frankie, were visiting Italy for a wedding. The 10-day trip through Venice and Tuscany ended in Rome, where the Catholic family visited Vatican City for a general audience with the pope.
Carter said the event in St. Peter's Square was packed with people.
"It was crazy," she said. “Our tour guide knew exactly where to take us, where (Francis) would be taken,” Carter said.
Carter said her guide explained if the pope saw the baby, she would be taken up to him.
Before the pope passed, the pontiff’s security detail saw the baby and took her to the pope. Carter and her family watched as the pontiff blessed and kissed little Frankie.
“It happened really, really fast -- like 30 seconds,” Carter said. “It was just so unexpected.”
Carter captured video of the blessing, and said the entire experience was “really, really special,” particularly being from Texas and seeing so many countries and cultures represented at the event.
“This man is one of the most important people in the world,” Carter said. “He’s a symbol of peace, especially amid everything that’s happening. … (It was) such an incredible honor. It’s a story (Frankie) will have with her forever.”
The trip was baby Frankie's first time in Europe. Carter said the infant was "seriously perfect" on the trip: "I don’t know if the blessing has anything to do with it," she said with a laugh.