Francis Cardinal George’s cancer returns

The Archdiocese of Chicago confirms Francis Cardinal George is battling cancer again.

He’ll undergo a new regime of chemotherapy to address new signs of cancer activity surrounding his right kidney.

The treatment will take place over the next two months.

The Cardinal was diagnosed with urothelial cancer in August 2012 and underwent chemotherapy at that time. The cancer, dormant for more than a year, is still confined to the area of his right kidney.

In the current edition of Catholic New World, the cardinal talks about his illness in his column “Lent: Taking stock of our lives:”

“If I may speak personally, this Lent finds me once again in poor health.  My cancer, which was dormant for well over a year, is still confined to the area of the right kidney, but it is beginning to show signs of new activity.  After many tests, scans, biopsies and other inconveniences, the settled judgment is that the best course of action is to enter into a regimen of chemotherapy, with drugs more aggressive than those that were used in the first round of chemo.  This treatment will take place over the next two months, when my reaction to the chemo will be evaluated.

I was able to maintain my administrative schedule well during that first round, although my public schedule was sometimes curtailed because of lowered immunity.  As I prepare for this next round of chemo, I ask for your prayers, which have always sustained me, and for your understanding if I cannot always fulfill the schedule already set for the next several months.  While I am not experiencing symptoms of cancer at this time, this is a difficult form of the disease, and it will most probably eventually be the cause of my death.  Chemo is designed to shrink the tumor, prevent symptoms and prolong life.”

This is a developing story. Check back for details.

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