Make-A-Wish Arizona sends Phoenix girl to Vatican City

Published: Sep. 7, 2015 at 10:11 PM MST|Updated: Nov. 30, 2015 at 11:11 PM MST
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(Source: Tucson News Now)
(Source: Tucson News Now)

PHOENIX (Tucson News Now) - In just a few weeks, thousands will be in Washington, New York and Philadelphia celebrating mass with Pope Francis.

One Phoenix girl won't be there, however, because she only has weeks to live.

Her name is Jazmin Negrete. She is 15 years old, and she has a rare form of stomach cancer called gastric adenocarcinoma.

One of her last wishes was to receive last rites in Vatican City and be blessed by Pope Francis.

Her wish came true, thanks to Make-A-Wish Arizona, and it's something she said has changed the way she thinks about her cancer and looking ahead.

"Religion plays a huge part in my life," Negrete said.

When Negrete was diagnosed with cancer in June, she was given two options - the first would take away several of her organs and leave her unable to speak, the second was to have no treatment, and have the quality of life she wanted.

"I said why not just live my life like I want to," she said.

Within two weeks of making her wish, Negrete and her family traveled to Vatican City.

There they were blessed by Pope Francis, received the anointing of the sick sacrament at a private mass in Vatican City and had the chance to visit Italy.

Negrete's mother, Sylvia Arredondo, said while the last few months have been almost unbearable, having Negrete's wish come true helped everyone.

"It was a healing, emotionally and spiritually for our family, and we needed that," she said.

Negrete said the visit gave her peace with her cancer, and serenity.

"I think it just went up another level it put my religion more powerful than it was," she said.

In a way, she said it made her cancer go away.

"I know I get pain, and I have my days, but mentally, I'm cured," she said.

Now, instead of looking to what's ahead, Negrete is focused on helping others by raising awareness of Make-A-Wish Arizona.

Make-A-Wish Arizona has granted more than 300 wishes to children across the state this year.

"I just want to give back to all the wish kids that want to go somewhere," Negrete said. "Your wish can come true, whatever you want."

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