Pope Francis will remain in hospital for “a few more days” in order “to optimise his medical and rehabilitation therapy,” according to a statement from the Holy See Press Office.
The Pope was originally expected to be in hospital for seven days following surgery last Sunday, 4 July, for a scheduled operation to treat colon diverticulitis. The statement said Pope Francis had “spent a quiet day and has completed the immediate post-operative course.” Throughout the past week, the Holy See has issued regular press statements emphasising that the Holy Father is doing well and recovering normally.
Yesterday, 11 July, the Pope led the weekly Angelus from a tenth floor balcony at Gemelli Hospital, after meeting with young patients of the oncology ward and their families. It was his first public appearance since his surgery. After the recitation of the Marian prayer, he greeted patients on the floor, along with medical and nursing staff. Later, the Press Office statement said, he celebrated Mass in a private chapel with staff who assist him daily.
The Pope, it continued, “considered the meaning of sport and its values” as he shared, with those close to him, his joy at the victories of the Italian and Argentine national football (soccer teams) – on Saturday, Argentina defeated Brazil to win the final of the Copa America, while the next day, Italy triumphed over England to win the Euro 2020 tournament.
The Holy Father, read the statement, reflected on “the sporting ability of being able to accept any result, even defeat.”
“Only in this way,” the statement continued, quoting Pope Francis, “in the face of life’s difficulties, can one always put oneself on the line, fighting without giving up, with hope and trust.”