Hospitalized pope’s recovery from surgery ‘satisfactory’

ROME (AP) — Pope Francis celebrated Mass, worked and dined with aides as his recovery from intestinal surgery continued with “satisfactory” results, the Vatican said Saturday.

Francis is up walking in the papal apartment on the 10th floor of Rome’s Gemelli Polyclinic, from where he is expected to deliver his weekly noontime prayer on Sunday.

Francis was admitted to Gemelli on July 4 after suffering a severe narrowing of his large intestine. Surgeons removed half of his colon.

The Vatican has said the 84-year-old pope, who lost part of one lung to an infection in his youth, is expected to remain hospitalized at least through the end of the week.

In a daily update Saturday, the Vatican said Francis’ latest blood tests were “satisfactory.”

“He is gradually resuming work and continues to stroll in the corridor of the apartment. In the afternoon, he celebrated Holy Mass in the private chapel, and in the evening he dined with those who are assisting him during these days,” the statement from Vatican spokesman Matteo Bruni said.

Bruni said after experiencing first-hand the care of doctors and nurses, Francis was thinking in particular of those who “with care and compassion choose the face of suffering.”

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