Holy Father 'well and improving'

 Although a new medical bulletin on Pope John Paul's condition will not be released until Thursday, the Holy See Press Office spokesman Joaquin Navarro-Valls told journalists outside the Gemelli Hospital yesterday morning that "the Pope is well, and his condition is improving." An hour later, following his daily visit to the Holy Father, Navarro-Valls indicated to journalists that "everything is normal." He said that the Pope's fifth night in the hospital was "tranquil," he "is a good patient and is continuing his voice exercises." The press office director also said that, as he was leaving Pope John Paul's 10th floor hospital suite, "the Pope was preparing to celebrate Mass." A brief visit to the Pope by Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, was on yesterday's agenda. The Archbishop of Westminster, Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor, who is in Rome on a routine visit, with Archbishop Patrick Kelly of Liverpool, also visited the hospital to leave a message for the Pope. The message the Cardinal left reads as follows: "I came with the love and the prayers of the Catholic people of England and Wales, and of so many others, for the Holy Father." Source: VIS/Archbishop's House

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