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Pope Francis is undergoing surgery for “colon diverticulitis,” which is a type of diverticulitis that affects the intestines.
Pope Francis hospitalized for 'Planned' surgery

According to the Vatican, Pope Francis traveled to a Rome hospital on Sunday for scheduled surgery on his large intestine. It comes just hours after Pope Francis attended St. Peter’s Square for the annual Sunday Angelus prayer. and announced his plans to visit Hungary and Slovakia in September.

The Holy See’s press office issued a brief statement that did not specify when the procedure would be performed at the Gemelli Polyclinic, a Catholic teaching hospital, but did note that a medical update would be provided once the surgery was completed. The procedure, however, is expected to take place later Sunday, according to sources.

Pope John Paul II had a benign tumor in his colon removed in 1992, and Gemelli doctors have done surgery on papal patients before.

Pope Francis hospitalized for 'Planned' surgery

Since his election to the papacy in 2013, it was the pope’s first known hospitalization.

The 84-year-old Pope has been diagnosed with “symptomatic diverticular stenosis of the colon,” a narrowing of the big intestine, according to the Vatican. Dr. Sergio Alfieri, the director of Gemelli’s stomach surgery department, was scheduled to do the surgery.

Francis had used the same Sunday appearance a week before to ask the public for prayers for himself, which could have hinted at the upcoming surgery.

“I ask you to pray for the pope, pray in a special way,”

“I know you will do it,” he stated, adding that the pope “needs your prayers.”

Francis is in good health, however he did have part of one lung removed when he was younger. He also suffers from sciatica, which is a painful ailment in which a nerve in the lower back and leg is affected. As a result, he has had to cancel appearances on occasion.

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