Pope Francis hospitalized after chest pain and infection in Rome, will stay ‘several days’

Pope Francis, the 86-year-old spiritual leader of the world’s 1.3 billion Catholics, was taken by ambulance to a hospital in Rome on Wednesday and a spokesman said he will spend “several days” there to be treated for a lung infection to become.

Both Corriere della Sera, a leading Italian daily, and America Magazine, a Jesuit publication, reported that the pope suffered “chest pains” on Wednesday. America magazine said its sources reported that Francis was first taken to the hospital’s coronary ward for a check-up.

The publications each reported that Massimiliano Strappetti, Francis’ personal health assistant, made the decision to call an ambulance. After a general audience Wednesday morning, including a motorized procession through St. Peter’s Square where he kissed and blessed several children, he was transported from the Vatican to Gemelli University Hospital.

Francis has reportedly been having trouble breathing “recently,” Vatican spokesman Matteo Bruni told the Associated Press.

Mr Bruni said the pope has tested negative for COVID-19 but will need “therapy” for his breathing problems.

His audiences were canceled until Friday.

The hospitalization comes as Vatican Holy Week is scheduled to begin with Palm Sunday on April 2, followed by other celebrations of Jesus’ crucifixion, burial and resurrection, culminating on Good Friday April 7 and Easter Sunday two days later.

The Pope’s health has been a topic of ongoing concern both before and after his 2021 surgery, which removed about 13 inches of his colon to treat diverticulitis. Pneumonia in 1957 caused then-Jorge Mario Bergoglio to lose the upper lobe of his right lung, but he was reported to be in good health when he was made pope in 2013.

He suffers from recurrent sciatica and had a knee problem that forced him to use a wheelchair for many public situations.

In an interview with Swiss television in early March, the Corriere newspaper reported, the pope acknowledged that he had physical problems.

“I’m old. I have less physical stamina, the knee was a physical humiliation, although it’s healing well now,” the newspaper quoted him as saying.

Other media reports have led Francis to reject the idea of ​​resigning, as his late predecessor Benedict XVI had said. did, although the Pope has admitted that a signed letter of resignation exists that can be used if he is unable to work.

— This article is based in part on wire service reports.

Source : www.washingtontimes.com

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