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Pope Cancels Audiences Due to Illness

  • Reuters

Pope Francis waves as he arrives to lead his Wednesday general audience in Saint Peter's Square at the Vatican, Sept. 18, 2013.

Pope Francis waves as he arrives to lead his Wednesday general audience in Saint Peter's Square at the Vatican, Sept. 18, 2013.

Pope Francis canceled several audiences on Friday due to flu, the first time his health has affected his role as leader of the world's 1.2 billion Roman Catholics.

The 76-year-old's wellbeing is under close scrutiny because of the shock February resignation of his predecessor Benedict XVI, who said his health was declining and a stronger man could do the job better.

A Vatican spokesman said Francis had canceled several meetings with cardinals and bishops on Friday morning, but would still take part in the ordination of a bishop in the afternoon.

"There is no reason for worry,'' Father Federico Lombardi
said.
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