Pope Francis has resumed his weekly appearance from the Vatican’s window to bless believers in St. Peter’s Square on Sunday.
The Supreme Head of the catholic church, who had surgery two weeks ago that removed a portion of his colon, looked very cheerful.
Recall that precisely one week ago, Francis had blessed faithful from the balcony of the hospital and expressed deep gratitude to all the medical staff who looked after him. The pontiff underwent bowel surgery on July 4 to remove a portion of his colon after contracting the intestines.
The 84 yrs old pontiff, who spoke on Sunday for 14 minutes, emphasized the value of taking a break in his remarks, while not mentioning his ongoing convocation. He recommended “rest, contemplation and compassion”. Let’s take advantage of the summertime for this.”
After giving his blessing, Francis cited some tragic current events. He expressed closeness to the flood victims in Germany, Belgium, and the Netherlands, which killed at least 180 people. He also lamented the violence in South Africa, emphasizing the South African desire for harmony. The Pope cited the unrest in Cuba to express a prayer that the Cuban people would have a “more just and fraternal society”.
At the end of his remarks from a window of the Apostolic Palace, Francis looked a little winded, adlibbing several times and interrupting himself to cough once. But he ended with a strong, enthusiastic invitation to the crowd as he always does to “have a nice lunch” and to pray for him.
Hundreds of people clapped loudly. Some had a national flag and at least one homemade banner with a red heart and “I love you” in Italian.
After 10 days in Rome’s major Catholic hospital, Francis returned to his home in Vatican City on 14 July.
Apart from a Sunday afternoon appointment to bless the faithful gathered in St Peter’s Square, the Pontiff has no other public appearance scheduled for the rest of July. Even before his surgery was announced, the Vatican had said that his weekly general audience on Wednesday would not take place during July. This is in keeping with the previous years of his papacy, which allows him a little summer break.
Hours before heading to the hospital for surgery, Francis announced he would visit Hungary and Slovakia in mid-September.
We are glad Pope Francis is back and healthy.