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Holy See confirms Pope's presence at Easter Vigil

Holy See confirms Pope's presence at Easter Vigil

Francis pulled out of Good Friday Via Crucis due to fatigue

ROME, 30 March 2024, 11:56

ANSA English Desk



Pope Francis will attend the Easter Vigil at St Peter's Basilica on Saturday evening, the Vatican has said.
    The announcement comes after the 87-year-old pope at the last minute pulled out of the Via Crucis at the Colosseum on Friday evening allegedly due to fatigue.
    Earlier on Good Friday he had presided at the two-hour Solemn Liturgy of the Lord's Passion at st Peter's Basilica.
    "In order to preserve his health in view of tomorrow's Vigil and Easter Sunday Mass, this evening Pope Francis will follow the Way of the Cross at the Colosseum from Casa Santa Marta," said the Vatican press office.
    The Easter Vigil is scheduled to take place at 7.30 pm.
    On Sunday the pope is expected for the Easter Mass in St Peter's Square at 10 am and then for the Easter Message and 'Urbi et Orbi' blessing from the central balcony of St Peter's basilica at 12 am.
    Lingering flu-like symptoms and fatigue have forced the Argentine pontiff to cancel engagements and give up readings on several occasions in recent weeks. However, on Monday his doctor told Corriere della Sera that this is only to be expected for a man of his age.
    "The pope is an 87-year-old man with huge responsibilities. It is normal that he should go through periods of fatigue," said Sergio Alfieri, director of the surgery department at Rome's Gemelli Hospital, who has led abdominal surgery on Francis twice in the last three years.
    "I have no evidence of concerning situations," Alfieri went on.
    "The Holy Father is well for his age and considering his episodic respiratory difficulties in the coldest periods, which are also due to the lung operation he had many years ago.
    "I don't see him every day but I can assure you that he does not have particular diseases. And he undergoes regular check-ups," he added.


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