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Grand Imam of al-Azhar wishes Pope Francis a speedy recovery



I.Media for Aleteia - published on 07/05/21

Italians especially express their good wishes to Pope Francis, bishop of Rome.

“I wish my dear brother @Pontifex a speedy recovery to resume his dedication to humanity,” Ahmed el-Tayeb, the Grand Imam of al-Azhar, said on his Twitter account on July 5.

Pope François underwent colon surgery July 4 at the Gemelli polyclinic in Rome. He “reacted well,” announced the press office of the Holy See late in the evening.

The Grand Imam of al-Azhar (Egypt) and Pope Francis have formed a close relationship in recent years, notably signing the Abu Dhabi Declaration in 2019, which called for reconciliation and brotherhood. The Sunni leader was part of Pope Francis’ inspiration for his 2020 encyclical Fratelli tutti.

Other world leaders sent their good wishes to the Pope, including Italian President, Sergio Mattarella. While traveling in France, he addressed to the pontiff “the affectionate thoughts of all Italians” as well as “the most cordial wishes for a good convalescence and an even better and faster recovery.”

The mayor of Rome, Virginia Raggi, also sent “a thought to Pope Francis on behalf of the whole city of Rome,” via her Twitter account. “Best wishes for a speedy recovery,” she added.

Several embassies to the Holy See have publicly addressed the same encouragement to the pontiff, such as the embassy of the United Kingdom or the United States.

Sunday afternoon, after the announcement of the hospitalization of Peter’s Successor, prayer chains began, especially on social networks. For example, Scholas Occurrentes, an international organization of pontifical right, offered on Facebook a prayer time in three languages.

In Rome, during Masses celebrated on Sunday evening, the faithful were invited to pray especially for their bishop.

Pope Francis
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