The Pope attends the Holy Saturday vigil after his absence from the Stations of the Cross

Pope Francis, 87, attended the Holy Saturday vigil mass in St.

Oliver Thansan
Oliver Thansan
30 March 2024 Saturday 04:25
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The Pope attends the Holy Saturday vigil after his absence from the Stations of the Cross

Pope Francis, 87, attended the Holy Saturday vigil mass in St. Peter's Basilica this Saturday, after resigning minutes before the scheduled time on Friday to preside over the Via Crucis in the Colosseum in Rome. in order to “protect their health” in view of the remaining rites of Holy Week, according to the official Vatican statement. This Saturday's mass is one of the longest ceremonies, almost three hours, in the Catholic tradition.

Five minutes before the start of the Stations of the Cross on Friday, the Vatican press office reported that “to safeguard health before tomorrow's vigil and the Holy Mass on Easter Sunday,” Francis would follow the Stations of the Cross at the Colosseum from his residence. , the Casa Santa Marta.

This past Friday, everything was prepared: the security device along the road from the Vatican, the organization ready to receive the Pope in the Colosseum in Rome and 25,000 faithful present, as well as the white chair in the box installed on the hill of the Palatine. Francisco's absence left the chair empty.

Nor last year did Pope Francis, who had just left the hospital due to bronchitis, be able to be in the Colosseum on the recommendation of the doctors, and surely this was also the case on this occasion after the two-hour celebration of the Passion of the Lord. on Friday afternoon and the cold and humidity on the Roman night.

The Vatican has also confirmed the papal willingness to officiate the Resurrection Mass this Sunday and the Easter message and the urbi et orbi blessing that all the pontiffs pronounce from the central loggia of the Vatican basilica.

Pope Francis has suffered from respiratory problems in recent times, although he presided, apparently without problems, at the Holy Thursday mass in a women's prison in Rome, and on Friday, the ceremony of the passion of Christ in St. Peter's Basilica .