Pope Francis quips 'I'm still alive' as he leaves hospital

He was being treated in Rome for bronchitis

Pope Francis leaves the Gemelli Polyclinic in Rome after treatment. AFP
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Pope Francis was discharged on Saturday from a hospital in Rome where he was being treated for bronchitis, quipping: “I'm still alive.”

The pontiff, 86, was taken to Gemelli Polyclinic on Wednesday after reportedly suffering breathing difficulties following his weekly public audience.

He was treated with antibiotics, the Vatican said.

The pope, who marked the 10th anniversary of his pontificate in March, has suffered a number of ailments in recent years.

Vatican spokesman Matteo Bruni said on Friday that the Pope was expected to take part in this weekend's service for Palm Sunday — a major event that begins the Easter week celebrations.

Holy Week, as it is known, includes a busy schedule of rituals and ceremonies that can be physically demanding, including a Good Friday nighttime procession by Rome's Colosseum.

Pope Francis leaves hospital

Pope Francis leaves hospital
Pope Francis leaves hospital

The dean of the college of cardinals, Giovanni Battista Re, has said a cardinal would help the Pope during the week's celebrations and take attend to altar duties.

A similar arrangement was put in place last year, when the Pope sat to one side during some Easter events due to persistent knee pain, leaving it to senior cardinals to lead the Masses.

Updated: April 01, 2023, 11:02 AM

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