Pope still cold but still working at full speed

VATICAN CITY, March 1 (EFE) – Pope Francis confirmed today that he still has a cold but that all activities planned for today have been maintained after several days of catching the flu and going to the hospital for tests.

“Good morning. I ask you to read to me so that I don’t get too tired; I still have a cold and if I read too much I get very tired,” the Pope said in an audience with the participants of the “People to People” conference. Woman, Image of God,” organized by the Center for Career Search and Anthropology.

As happens in the general audience, the prepared speech was read by his collaborator Filippo Ciamparelli, although he wanted to say a few words first.

Throughout the morning, the pope will receive a series of audiences that have been confirmed so far.

Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Pietro Parolin confirmed that the pope “feels well” and that the test he underwent at the Gemelli Hospital on Tiber Island in central Rome days after contracting the flu was “routine.”

Parolin said in a statement to TV2000: “The Pope is fine, I saw him last night and he had a routine visit and he told me that there is nothing wrong with him and that he has recovered from the flu.”

Last Monday, the Vatican reported that “mild flu-like symptoms persisted, although there was no fever,” but planned hearings had been suspended as a precaution.

The pope did celebrate the traditional Angelus prayer on Sunday, leaning out of the window of the papal palace and reciting it in a good voice before thousands of worshipers gathered in St. Peter’s Square in the Vatican.

At the end of November, the Pope fell ill with bronchitis and had to cancel some events. He celebrated the Angelus privately and had a collaborator read the speech instead.

In order to allow himself to recover, the Argentine pope canceled his planned trip to Dubai for a climate summit in early December.

But he later fully recovered and even went to the Plaza de España on December 8 to pay homage to the Immaculate Conception in the traditional way.

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