Vatican City (PA) – Pope Francis has once again canceled public appearances due to nervous pain.
Francis will not attend three events in the coming days, “due to a recurrence of sciatica,” Vatican spokesman Matteo Bruni said in a statement Saturday.
The 84-year-old pope will continue with the blessing of the Angel on Saturday, delivered from the Apostolic Library instead of a window overlooking St. Peter’s Square due to the revival of the virus. But he will not say a liturgy at the Vatican Basilica on Sunday or a planned evening prayer at St. Paul̵
Nervous pains also forced the pope to miss New Year’s ceremonies at St. Peter’s Basilica.
The outbreak of Francis’ sciatica has raised questions about his planned trip to Iraq from March 3 to 8, a visit that some have questioned given the coronavirus pandemic.
Papal travels are exhausting under all circumstances, with many meetings every day, long Masses and reception lines, and numerous transfers by car and plane.
Francis speaks openly about his sciatica in the past. It is a form of pain in the lower body caused by compression or irritation of the nerve roots or sciatic nerve that runs from the lower spine down the thigh.