GWINNETT COUNTY, Ga. - A Gwinnett County teenager left Sunday on the trip of a lifetime to meet the pope.
Doctors diagnosed Gino Vizzi, 17, with an incurable form of cancer last year.
The Make-A-Wish foundation is sending him, his parents and his younger sister to Rome.
“It's something I can't fathom. Being Italian as well, and going to Italy to meet him is just amazing. Having my family with me, that's a blessing itself. So we're going to enjoy this moment together,” Vizzi said.
While in Rome, Vizzi will attend a public mass, where the pope is expected to offer a blessing.
“It's going to make my faith a lot stronger for sure. It will bring me closer to God. The Pope is one step right below God, I feel. To have him touch me or touch my shoulders will be a great feeling,’ he said.
Vizzi started an organization of his own called the "P-4 Foundation" to help other children battling cancer. The foundation raises money for childhood cancer research and provided aid to the families facing huge medical bills
“God gave me this for a reason—and that’s to help other children and families dealing with cancer by getting people to start praying and have faith in the power and purpose of GOD. And that is what I will do!” Vizzi told his parents when he was first diagnosed.
This weekend they held a baseball tournament at Cool Ray Field in Gwinnett County, called Play 4 Cure, to help raise money for the foundation.
“It's awesome. We're honored and thrilled just to have an opportunity to play for such a great cause,” said Brad Bouras, who took part in the tournament.
Vizzi will meet the pope on Wednesday.