At the end of the General Audience yesterday, Wednesday, February 9, 2022, Maria Dolores dos Santos Viveiros da Aveiro, mother of the Portuguese soccer star Cristiano Ronaldo, was greeted personally by Pope Francis, to whom she gave her son’s shirt, who at present plays for the Manchester United Club of the English League.
The Holy Father approached Maria Dolores after praying the “Our Father” and while expressing his usual greetings in Paul VI Hall. And he asked her, “And how is Cristiano?” After answering that all “is going well,” and giving him the elite sportsman’s gift, Cristiano’s mother was blessed by the Pope. Shortly after, she shared on Instagram her photo with the Bishop of Rome.
The Family Is the Most Important
As an article in ”Vatican News” points out in this connection, in 2014, during the presentation of the book Mae Coragem [Mother Courage] Maria Dolores said that the birth of her son was a gift of God. She commented that, when she was expecting Cristiano, she already had three children and they lived in economic precariousness. She didn’t want to go through with the pregnancy, but finally, the baby was born. “When Cristiano told me he was going to be a father, he asked me to help him raise the little one, giving him the same affection that I had always given him, his brother, and his sisters,” she said.
On Saturday, February 5, the Portuguese star celebrated his 37th birthday and, on the occasion of its celebration, he wrote on the social networks that “life is a Russian mountain.” But he also said the following: “hard work, urgent objectives at great speed, exacting expectations . . . but in the end everything is reduced to the family, to love, to honesty, to friendship, to the values that make it all worthwhile.”
Translation by Virginia M. Forrester