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Thursday, March 31, 2005

Pope's medical condition deteriorates

An Italian news agency is reporting that Pope John Paul II's health condition has worsened:
The Vatican did not immediately comment on the report, which said doctors had to intervene because of what was described as a "worrying" drop in the pope's blood pressure, but a spokesman later said the Pope has a high fever because of a urinary tract infection. The Pope is reportedly being given antibiotics for the infection. CNN quoted an unnamed Vatican official who described the situation as serious and said the Pope had received the last rights or the sacrament of the sick, which is not necessarily an indication that John Paul is in any immediate danger of dying.
An Australian newspaper says that Vatican sources are less optimistic:
"We are on stand-by for anything," one priest who works in an important Vatican department said. "Hardly anyone thinks the situation will improve but everyone is hoping for a miracle," he said.
"I know the Pope is very disappointed with the progress of his rehabilitation and would like it to be much faster," said another source, a Vatican monsignor. "This is a new phase in this papacy," the source said, adding the Pope would most likely have to face what looks set to be "a permanent state of precarious health".
I've said it before and I'll say it again: the Holy Father is tough as nails. Don't write him off just yet.


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