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Benedict XVI is weak but still following concerns of Church, says bishop

BENEDICT XVI
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Archbishop Gänswein assists Pope Emeritus in celebrating Mass.

A Coptic Catholic bishop of Egypt says Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI is now very weak at age 90, but still “aware of everything.”

Bishop Kyrillos William Samaan of Assiut gave this report after a meeting with the Pope Emeritus at the beginning of September, according to the Swiss Catholic Information agency cath.ch in an article published today.

According to Bishop Samaan, he spent 45 minutes with Benedict XVI, who asked him about the various problems of the Church in Egypt, including dialogue with Muslims and the relationship with Al-Azhar University, the highest Sunni authority.

On September 23, the German news website Mittelbayerische reported that Benedict is now too weak to celebrate Mass by himself. Archbishop Georg Gänswein, his private secretary who is also prefect of the Pontifical Household, assists him. The Pope Emeritus will turn 91 on April 16.

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