Pope Francis has canceled a planned trip to Africa for health reasons, the Vatican said in a statement Friday.
The Pope was due to travel to the Republic of Congo and South Sudan between July 2 and 7, but will instead concentrate on ongoing therapy for his problematic right knee, according to the statement.
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“At the request of his doctors, and in order not to jeopardize the results of the therapy that he is undergoing for his knee, the Holy Father has been forced to postpone, with regret,” the statement read.
The Pope, 85, joked in May that he might need some tequila to help with the pain of his troublesome knee.
Pope Francis jokes he needs 'some tequila' to help with knee painMay 17, 202200:46
The problem has caused him to use a wheelchair at recent events. At an audience at the Vatican in May, Francis needed the help of an aide to get out of his wheelchair and onto his seat.
In July, the pontiff underwent intestinal surgery and left the hospital after 10 days' recovery.
He also suffers from sciatica, which has left him with a slight limp.
The pope is planning to visit Canada in late July and Kazakhstan in September. A major meeting of bishops is due in 2023 to discuss the ongoing reforms of the Catholic Church.