Friday, 18 September, 2020

A source close to the secretary of two popes says he is suffering from “severe kidney problems”.

Georg Gänswein

Msgr. Georg Gänswein

 Newsroom (September 13, 2020 Gaudium Press)  Msgr. Georg Gänswein is often an expression of vitality and good looks. According to news exported by  CNA Deutsch, the German Archbishop is not well. According to sources close to the Archbishop, he is said to have been admitted to a hospital with “serious kidney problems”. The source has not offered further details.

Archbishop Gänswein has been a prominent Church figure for many years, even in non-ecclesiastical environments.

Ordained a priest in 1984 at the age of 28, he holds a doctorate in Canon Law from Ludwig Maximilians University. In addition to having worked in the Congregation for Divine Worship and then in the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Arch. Gänswein was made a professor of Canon Law at the Pontifical University of the Holy Cross.

Prelate of honor of His Holiness in 2006, he was made Prefect of the Papal Household by Benedict XVI in 2012 and was then granted the episcopate and titular Archbishop of Urbs Salvia.

In a recent interview, Msgr. Gänswein referred to “serious illness of the inner ear”, from which he still suffers sequels. “I still have a slight feeling of dizziness, and the left ear has a limited hearing capacity. Unfortunately, I also continue to have tinnitus, very annoying tinnitus.”

Before the news of his kidney condition, no serious health failure had been reported.

In another interview,  granted shortly after Pope Ratzinger’s resignation to Peter Seewald, one of Benedict XVI’s most renowned biographers, Arch. Gänswein told of his reaction when the German Pope told him of his future resignation:

“My first reaction was: ‘No Holiness, you can’t do that!’ But those were words spoken from affection. I immediately realized that he had not told me this to help him make the decision; he was communicating to me a resolution that he had already adopted.

“When the Pope revealed to me what he intended to do, he forced me to keep it under the commitment of silence. As you can imagine, it was not easy for me, there were situations in which it almost tore me up inside.”

Archbishop Gänswein did not imagine then his soon-to-be future role as a bridge between two popes, maintaining his duties as Benedict’s private secretary, but also being prefect of the Papal Household of Francis.

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