Pope Francis goes to Rome hospital for bowel surgery

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The Vatican said Pope Francis had visited a hospital in Rome for scheduled surgery for a stricture, or restriction, of the large intestine. The brief announcement on Sunday afternoon did not specify when the operation would take place, but it did indicate that there would be an announcement when the operation was completed.

Barely three hours earlier, Francis had happily greeted the public in St. Peter’s Square according to Sunday tradition and told them that he would be going to Hungary and Slovakia in September.

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A week earlier Francis, 84, had used the same traditional appearance to ask the audience for special prayers for the Pope, which, in hindsight, might have hinted at the planned surgery at the Gemelli Polyclinic in Rome.

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