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Pope cancels events because of flare up of sciatica pain

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Antoine Mekary

Kathleen N. Hattrup - published on 01/24/21

Word of God Sunday and Vespers for the end of the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity being led by representatives of the Holy Father.

Pope Francis has once again had to cancel some events due to a flare up of his painful sciatica condition, the Vatican announced Saturday. The pope was unable to celebrate the Mass for Word of God Sunday in St. Peter’s Basilica; Archbishop Rino Fisichella read the homily the Holy Father had prepared.

Two events of January 25 were also taken from the pope’s schedule: a meeting with Vatican diplomats, and the celebration of Vespers at St. Paul’s Outside the Walls for the closing of the Week of Prayer of Christian Unity. Cardinal Kurt Koch will represent the pope at the latter event, and no date has been set for the postponement of the former.

The pope did lead the praying of the midday Angelus on Sunday, from the Apostolic Library.

The pope’s condition has been giving him extra problems of late. He had to cancel his participation in the celebrations of New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day as well.

The Holy Father sometimes walks with a quite notable limp as he has long suffered from sciatica, a condition usually caused by compression of a nerve in the back.

Sciatica usually causes intense pain in the back and one leg, and already in the first year of his papacy, the pope spoke about it giving him trouble. “Sciatica is very painful, very painful! I don’t wish it on anyone!” he said, returning from the World Youth Day in Brazil.




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Pray to St. Raphael for anyone suffering

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