Pope Francis left and returned to the Vatican on Wednesday after spending more than a week in a Rome hospital following intestinal surgery, authorities said.
The pope was released from Gemelli Hospital early Wednesday following a 10-day stay. On July 4, he had a portion of his colon removed.
According to Vatican spokesperson Matteo Bruni, the 84-year-old pontiff’s health is improving.
“Before returning to the Vatican, the pope went to the Basilica of Saint Mary Major where … he expressed his gratitude for the success of his surgery and offered a prayer for all the sick, especially those he had met during his stay in hospital,” Bruni said, according to Vatican News.
On Sunday, Pope Francis emerged in public for the first time from his hospital window during his weekly Angelus prayer.
The pope’s operation had been planned after tests revealed that he had symptomatic diverticular stenosis of the colon.
“In these days of being hospitalized, I have experienced how important good healthcare is, accessible to all,” the pope tweeted on Sunday.
“Let us pray for all the sick that may no one be left alone, that everyone receive the anointing of listening, closeness and care. We can all give it with a visit, a phone call, an outstretched hand.”