Pope Francis has canceled a third day of scheduled events to recuperate from an undisclosed illness.
The 83-year-old pontiff will skip two official audiences at the Apostolic Palace. One would have been with a team of bioethicists and another with the Catholic “Legion of Christ.”
Francis is working from the Vatican’s Santa Marta hotel during his recovery, papal officials said, who noted he continues to attend Mass each morning.
The Vatican has not provided any details about his illness, calling it only a “slight indisposition.”
The pope has not been seen in public since he was caught on camera coughing and blowing his nose during an Ash Wednesday Mass.
His absence — the longest sick leave of his papacy — comes as coronavirus sweeps Italy. The country has reported 888 cases and at least 21 deaths, according to the latest numbers; Italy is now the most infected nation after China.
Officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have warned Americans to brace for the disease spreading in the United States and possibly becoming a pandemic.
With Post Wires
Prayer to St. Roch
O Blessed Saint Roch,
Patron of the sick,
Have pity on those
Who lie upon a bed of suffering.
Your power was so great
When you were in this world,
That by the sign of the Cross,
Many were healed of their diseases.
Now that you are in heaven,
Your power is not less.
Offer, then, to God
Our sighs and tears
And obtain for us that health we seek
Through Christ our Lord.
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