Pope Francis is expected to leave hospital tomorrow after rapid recovery
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Pope Francis is expected to leave hospital tomorrow after a rapid recovery that saw him eat pizza with staff and even baptise a baby.
Concerns grew for the Pope’s health on Wednesday when the Vatican revealed that the 86-year-old would be kept in hospital ‘for several days’ to treat a respiratory infection that has caused difficulties with his breathing.
But the Pontiff has now been cleared by doctors to be discharged from the Gemeli Hospital in Rome on Saturday.
Vatican spokesman Matteo Bruni also said that Francis will be in St Peter’s Square for Palm Sunday Mass at the start of Holy Week, although he did not say if the Pontiff would deliver the homily during the particularly lengthy service.
‘The medical team that is following His Holiness Pope Francis, after evaluating the outcome of tests carried out today and the favourable clinical recovery, has confirmed discharge on Saturday,’ Mr Bruni said in a written statement on Friday night.
Pope Francis is expected to leave hospital tomorrow after a rapid recovery that saw him eat pizza with staff and even baptise a baby
Concerns grew for the Pope’s health on Wednesday when the Vatican revealed that the 86-year-old would be kept in hospital ‘for several days’ to treat a respiratory infection. He was seen grimacing earlier that day
Throughout the day, heartwarming pictures emerged of the Pope up and about in hospital baptising a baby and visiting the paediatrics ward.
In a video of the baptism released by the Vatican, after the mother tells Francis the boy’s name, Miguel Angel, the Pope uses a metal hospital tray usually used to hold syringes to pour water over the sleeping baby’s head.
He then tries to comfort the infant, who wakes up, wailing and seeming to swat away the Pope’s hand.
The Pontiff then asks the mother to dry her son’s wet forehead before telling her: ‘When you go to your parish, say that the Pope baptised him.’
Calling the Pontiff’s medical recovery ‘normal,’ Mr Bruni said earlier in the day that on Thursday evening, ‘Pope Francis had dinner, eating a pizza, together with all those who are assisting him in these days of the hospital stay,’ including doctors, nurses, assistants and Vatican security personnel.
The Vatican said that the Pope had responded well to antibiotic treatment for bronchitis resulting in a ‘marked’ improvement in his health.
He was smiling as he visited a children’s cancer ward and gave out large, wrapped chocolate Easter eggs.
Earlier in the day, Francis sent a tweet on Friday possibly inspired by his current health challenge.
The Pope also visited a children’s cancer ward at the Gemelli Hospital where he handed babies Easter eggs
The Vatican said that the Pope (pictured in the oncology ward) had responded well to antibiotic treatment for bronchitis resulting in a ‘marked’ improvement in his health.
The Pontiff has been cleared by doctors to be discharged from the Gemeli Hospital in Rome on Saturday. Pictured: Pope Francis writes on a visitor book
‘When experienced with faith, the trials and difficulties of life serve to purify our hearts, making them humbler and thus more and more open to God,’ Francis wrote.
The Vatican seemed keen to quickly dispel any worries about the Pope’s physical fitness to carry on fully with his duties.
Nearly immediately after the announcement of a discharge date for Francis, the Vatican announced that the Pope would meet the prime minister of Bosnia-Herzegovina on Monday in a private audience at the Apostolic Palace.
The hospital stay came days before the busiest time of the year for the Pope with Palm Sunday Mass around the corner, which usually draws tens of thousands of faithful, including many pilgrims from abroad, flocking to Rome for Holy Week.
Francis had already largely stopped celebrating Mass at major Catholic Church holy days because of a chronic knee problem, but had continued to preside at the ceremonies and deliver homilies.
The Holy Week appointments include a stamina-taxing late-night Way of the Cross procession marked by prayers on Good Friday at the Colosseum in Rome and Easter Mass on April 9, which is traditionally followed by a long papal speech delivered from the central balcony of St Peter’s Basilica.
During Wednesday’s hour-long public audience, Francis at times appeared visibly in pain when he moved about and was helped by aides.
In July 2021, Francis underwent surgery at Gemelli Polyclinic after suffering from a narrowing of his colon. As a young man in Argentina, Francis had part of a lung removed and he often speaks in a whisper.
Source: DailyMail UK