After Polish Formula One driver Robert Kubica survived a major crash last week, he requested relics of Pope John Paul II and received them from the present Archbishop of Krakow.
Kubica has been in the hospital since a Feb. 6 crash during a rally race called the Ronde di Andora in northwestern Italy's Liguria region left him with serious injuries to his limbs. The car was destroyed after it hit a guardrail on a mountain road at an estimated 140 mph.
The driver has undergone operations to treat damage in his right hand and shoulder and his right foot. According to local news reports, his co-pilot escaped the crash without major injuries.
From the hospital, Kubica sent a request to the archbishop of his hometown of Krakow. He wanted a relic of Pope John Paul II to help him through the process.
The 26-year-old’s veneration for the late-pope is well known. He races with the Polish Pope's name inscribed on his helmet.
Karol Wojtyla served as Archbishop of Krakow before he was elected pope.
The request for the relics reached John Paul II's former personal secretary, Cardinal Stanislaw Dziwisz of Krakow, who then gave Kubica a pair of relics in a gold medallion. Poland's TVN24 reported that the reliquary contains a piece of a papal robe and a drop of his blood.
Cardinal Dziwisz told the television station he wished the driver a speedy recovery and commended him to the care of the soon-to-be beatified John Paul II.
"I hope also that he has a lot of faith that this will help him," the cardinal said of the relics.