Pope Francis has fallen ill after he led Ash Wednesday prayers at the St Peter’s Square at the Vatican where he prayed for the coronavirus patients.
The Pope appeared to have a cold and spoke with a slightly hoarse voice and coughed during the service while blowing his nose at the time.
He has been forced to cancel a planned mass prayer to mark the start of Lent that was to be held at the St. John Lateran Basilica in Rome.
The Vatican said the 83-year-old pontiff had a “slight indisposition” and would proceed with the rest of his planned work on Thursday. But Francis “preferred to stay near Santa Marta,” the Vatican hotel where he lives.
Even though it was not immediately established whether or not he met one of the suspected cases, he was seen shaking hands with the faithful and even kissed a baby.
He also greeted the visiting bishops even as the deadly coronavirus (CONVID-19) continued to spread to other parts of Europe.
The Coronavirus since its outbreak has taken the lives of at least 14 persons out of more than 528 cases reported in Italy alone.