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Pope Francis's health is 'improving'—Vatican

By Agence France-Presse Published Dec 04, 2023 9:03 am

Pope Francis's health is "improving," the Vatican said Saturday, Dec. 2 after the pontiff was forced to cancel his attendance at the COP28 climate conference because of bronchitis.

"The health conditions of the Holy Father are improving," the Vatican said in a statement. "The pope does not have a fever and is continuing with his treatment."

Even so, to avoid exposing him to temperature variations, the 86-year-old Argentinian did not recite the traditional Angelus Prayer from a balcony on Saint Peter's Square. 

Instead, as he did last week, he recited the prayer in his private quarters, which was broadcast on screens in the square below and on the Vatican's media outlets. 

Francis had already canceled his visit to the COP28 in Dubai, where he was due to make a much-anticipated speech about the environment. 

Instead, it was Cardinal Secretary of State Pietro Parolin, the Vatican's number two, who read the pope's speech Saturday, in which he called on participants to make a "breakthrough" in the ecological transition. (AFP)