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Discourse of Joe Biden at Vatican Conference on Regenerative Medicine

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Discourse of Joe Biden at Vatican Conference on Regenerative Medicine

Vice-president of the United States, Joseph R. Biden Jr. was in the Vatican last Friday afternoon to take part in the Third International Conference on the Progress of Regenerative Medicine and its Cultural Impact, which was held at the Vatican, April 28-30, 2016. The vice-president gave the following discourse, republished from the blog of the office.


I’ve have an opportunity in my 200-year career, as you’ve just heard. His Eminence and I were talking about age. I am 25 years older than His Eminence, but I’ve spoken in a number of magnificent fora, but none more magnificent than this. And it’s a great, great honor to be back in the Vatican.

And, Elana, I want to thank you for the introduction. But more than that, I want to thank you for your courage, and your family’s courage, and the inspiration you give to so many young people around the world. It matters.

Your Eminences, I’m honored to be with you in this magnificent hall. And, Robin, thank you. It’s good to be here. It’s a pleasure to be with all of you scientists, physicians, faith leaders, philanthropists, patients, and their families.

There is no cancer patient whose circumstances are not shared with everyone that loves them. I know, as millions of people around the world know.

And I want to stand by thanking all of you who are here for your knowledge, your dedication, your tenacity, and for your pastoral care. Like tens of millions of people around the world, my family and I have been the beneficiaries of your wisdom, your commitment, your compassion when we were still clinging to hope that — my son Hunter is with me, and my son-in-law Howard — we were clinging to hope that Hunter’s brother, my son would somehow be the beneficiary of a last-minute breakthrough before God called him.

If you permit me what they call in my country, in my Senate where I worked, whenever you wanted to make a personal statement, the protocol was to stand on the floor of the Senate and say, I’d like to ask forgiveness for a point of personal privilege. I know he’s not here at the moment. But I want to thank His Holiness for the personal time and the private time, the generosity with his time. As he was leaving the United States, I had the great privilege of escorting him to the aircraft in the city of Philadelphia. And he asked if he could meet with my family. We had just lost my son. And he met with my extended family in the hangar behind where the aircraft was.

And I wish every grieving parent, brother, sister, mother, father would have had the benefit of his words, his prayers, his presence. He provided us with more comfort than even he I think will ever understand.


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