(Vatican Radio) The Director of the Press Office, Fr. Federico Lombardi, SJ, has reiterated his denial of reports Pope Francis is suffering ill health. Speaking to reporters ahead of the daily briefing on the doings in and around the Synod Hall during the XIV Ordinary Assembly of the Synod of Bishops (now in its third and final week), Fr. Lombardi said, “I fully confirm my previous statement, having verified the facts with the appropriate sources, including the Holy Father.” The statement from the Director of the Press Office of the Holy See goes on to offer serial refutation of certain specific claims that have been made in the Italian press. Please find the official English translation of the full text of Fr. Lombardi, SJ’s statement, below
Statement by the Director of the Holy See Press Office regarding false information on the health of the Holy Father
I fully confirm my previous statement, having verified the facts with the appropriate sources, including the Holy Father. No Japanese doctor has visited the Pope in the Vatican and there have been no examinations of the type indicated in the article. The competent offices have confirmed that there have been no arrivals of external parties in the Vatican by helicopter; similarly, there were no arrivals of this type during the month of January.
I am able to confirm that the Pope is in good health.
I reiterate that the publication of this false information is a grave act of irresponsibility, absolutely inexcusable and unconscionable. It would be equally unjustifiable to continue to fuel similarly unfounded information. It is hoped, therefore, that this matter be closed immediately.
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