JUBA – Pope Francis on Sunday publicly apologized for postponing his apostolic visit to the Democratic Republic of the Congo and South Sudan over knee and leg-related problems.
He made his apology while addressing 20,000 pilgrims gathered in St. Peter’s Square on Sunday at Vatican City.
“I truly feel great sorrow at having to postpone this visit, which means so much to me. I apologize for this,” Pope stated.
Pope sounded optimistic that he would reschedule his visit to Juba, Kinshasa as soon as he get better.
Pope said: “Dearest friends, with great sorrow, I had to postpone my visit to your countries, programmed for the first days of July, because of the problems with the leg.”
He said how very much he wanted to visit South Sudan and Congo and was “hopeful” that with “the help of God and medical cures” he would be able to do so soon.
He asked the faithful to join him in praying for the trip to take place as soon as possible.
Last week, the Vatican announced the postponement of Pop Francis a planned July trip to Congo and South Sudan on doctors’ orders due to knee and leg-related problems.
The Papal Trip to two African nations was to include two stops in the DRC – in the capital, Kinshasa, and the city of Goma – and a visit to Juba, the capital of South Sudan.
Pope Francis’ leg, especially his right knee, has been afflicted since the last days of December 2021.
It has been a source of great pain as one could see from the grimaces on his face during public events.
He can get in and out of the car only with enormous difficulty and can stand up only for short periods.