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Pope Francis told to avoid Ash Wednesday public service due to acute knee pain

Pope Francis will be unable to preside over Ash Wednesday services on March 2 because of acute knee pain, according to media reports. The pope’s doctor had “prescribed a period of greater rest for the leg” because of “acute gonalgia,” or knee pain, the Vatican explained in a note.
Hands in Prayer

Pope Francis will be unable to preside over Ash Wednesday services on March 2 because of acute knee pain, according to media reports.

The pope’s doctor had “prescribed a period of greater rest for the leg” because of “acute gonalgia,” or knee pain, the Vatican explained in a note.

It is unknown whether the pain is related to 85-year-old Pope Francis’ previous difficulties with sciatica.

It is difficult for him to stand for long periods.

Sciatica is a chronic nerve condition that causes back, hip, and leg pain. Pope Francis jokingly calls this condition his “troublesome guest,” which makes him walk with a limp and has forced him to cancel or modify high-profile appearances in the past.

In recent weeks, the Holy Father had complained of an inflammation of the ligament in his right knee. At one general audience last month, he apologized to the faithful, informing them that he would not be able to move among them to bring his personal greetings.

The problem was “temporary,” he said, adding with a smile: “They say this only happens to old people, and I don’t know why it happened to me.”

A few days earlier, he apologized to another audience that he would have to remain seated. “My leg hurts, and it is worse if I remain standing,” he said.

He was hospitalized for surgery in July to remove part of his colon, but he is generally considered to be in good health.

The knee pain prevented the Pope's participation in a meeting in Florence on Sunday with bishops and mayors from the Mediterranean region.

He will not preside over the Ash Wednesday services that start the period of Lent.

The knee pain, however troublesome, did not stop him from visiting the Russian ambassador to the Holy See on Friday morning (February 25) “to express concern for the war” after the Russian invasion of Ukraine, notes a piece in the New York Times.

The Vatican spokesman Matteo Bruni confirmed that Francis spent more than half an hour with the ambassador, Alexander Avdeev.

Pope Francis appears optimistic. His knee pain hasn't stopped his plans to visit Malta in early April this year.

 

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Comments

Benedicta F. Pinto , Mar 03 2022 - 1:33am
I have been praying much for peace & harmony which is the greatest need of the moment.