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Cardinal to attend annual retreat after recuperating from cancer treatment

Updated: August 20, 2012 11:51AM

After a few days of recuperating at home following treatment for cancer, Cardinal Francis George will head Sunday to north suburban Mundelein to make his annual retreat.

George’s retreat plans were announced by Rev. William Woestman at mass Saturday at Holy Name Cathedral, the seat of the Chicago Archdiocese over which George presides. Woestman asked those gathered to pray for George after he underwent a procedure Wednesday to remove cancerous cells in his kidney and liver.

“Although he’s 75, he’s very strong,” Woestman said. “So we pray especially for him so he may continue for a few more years” as cardinal.

Parishinoers were later asked join in a petition asking that George and “all those who are receiving treatment for cancer ... receive the grace needed for healing and the endurance needed for peace.”

Those attending mass said they were thinking of George and wishing him well.

“He’s a good man and we pray for him, said Gerda Joseph, an 82-year-old parishioner at Holy Name. “I know him as a nice guy, a thoughtful guy, a smart guy who doesn’t beat around the bush,” she said.

Jon Meek, 38, of Arlington Heights, said he was praying for George to “regain his health and strength.” A testicular cancer survivor, Meek said he appreciated a special living Stations of the Cross that the Archdiocese put on specifically for those with cancer and those caring for them.

Karen DeRose of Deerfield was also praying for the Cardinal.

“I hope things work out the best they can,” she said. “I’m praying for him and I hope it goes well.”

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