Sat, 24 Jul 2021

Pope Francis greets Vatican crowd two weeks after surgery

Robert Besser
20 Jul 2021, 17:42 GMT+10

VATICAN CITY: Pope Francis blessed a crowd from his Vatican window on Sunday, for the first time since undergoing surgery two weeks ago.
Francis, 84, spoke for 14 minutes to the crowd gathered in St. Peter's Square.

On the previous Sunday Francis had delivered his blessings from a hospital balcony and thanked the medical staff caring for him.

The pontiff underwent successful surgery on his colon on July 4 to counter the narrowing of his intestinal track.

Without mentioning his own convalescence, the Pope noted the value of taking a break. He recommended "rest, contemplation and compassion. Let's take advantage of summertime for this."

After issuing his blessing, Francis took note of many current events, from the devastating floods in Europe to violence in South Africa, as well as unrest in Cuba.
Francis ended on an upbeat note, urging those in the crowd to "have a good lunch" and to pray for him.

Following his remarks, the several hundred in attendance clapped enthusiastically.

After 10 days of hospital care, Francis returned to Vatican City on July 14.

Other than the weekly blessing to those in attendance in St. Peter's Square, the pontiff has no public appearances scheduled for the remainder of July.

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