published : 2023-11-30
Pope Francis Makes First Appearance Since Canceling UN Climate Summit Trip: 'I am Not Well'
Francis, who will turn 87 on Dec. 17, had part of one lung removed as a young man
Pope Francis, renowned for his commitment to addressing climate change, made a public appearance at the Vatican on Wednesday following the cancellation of his trip to a U.N. climate conference in Dubai.
Despite lingering health issues, the pope presided over the event, using an aide to read his prepared remarks due to his weakened state.
Francis, now 86, had part of one lung removed in his youth, which has led to persistent lung inflammation and breathing difficulties.
Although he briefly stood up and made the sign of the cross at the beginning of the gathering, the frail pontiff was clearly weak and soon returned to his seat.
Doctors had advised Francis against attending the conference due to his ongoing battle with the flu and respiratory ailments.
His absence was a significant disappointment as the pope has made environmental advocacy a central focus of his papacy.
While there remains uncertainty as to whether Francis will address the climate conference through a video message or another means, his desire to contribute to the discussions in the United Arab Emirates is evident.
Earlier this year, the pope was hospitalized for three days to receive treatment for bronchitis, highlighting the recurring respiratory challenges he faces.
During his recent appearance, the pontiff appeared fatigued and wore a bandage on his right hand following a CT scan he underwent at a Rome hospital.
Despite his current health issues, the Vatican assures that Pope Francis is in a good and stable condition, receiving intravenous antibiotics for his illness.
As we eagerly await further updates on his health and possible involvement in the climate conference, the world holds its breath, hoping that the beloved pope's strength will return as he continues to inspire and guide the faithful.