April 1, 2005

"The pope remains conscious"

VATICAN STATEMENT: "The pope remains conscious. This morning at 6:00 (0400 GMT) he celebrated Mass. About 7:15 (0515 GMT), realizing that today is Friday, a day in which he traditionally follows the Stations of the Cross, he asked that the fourteen stations be read to him. He followed attentively the reading of the text and made the sign of the cross at every station. After finishing the stations, he said he wished to recite the Liturgy of Hours and asked specifically that the Third Hour be read to him. I saw this morning that he received several of his collaborators: Cardinal Angelo Sodano, secretary of state; Archbishop Leonardo Sandri; Cardinal Camillo Ruini; Cardinal Edmund Szoka; Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, the dean of the College of Cardinals; Archbishop Giovanni Lajolo, and Archbishop Paolo Sardi. The situation now is stationary. The conditions of notable seriousness remain. The biological parameters are unsettled. His blood pressure is unstable. The pope continues to remain lucid, fully aware and, I must say, very serene. Several minutes ago he asked that some passages from Sacred Scriptures be read to him, and he attentively followed this reading."