Honduran Cardinal Oscar Rodriguez Maradiaga tests positive for COVID-19

President of Caritas Cardinal Oscar Rodriguez Maradiaga at Press conference at the Holy See Press office on May 12 2015 Credit Daniel Ibanez CNA 5 12 15 Cardinal Oscar Rodriguez Maradiaga at a press conference May 12, 2015. | Daniel Ibanez/CNA.

The Archdiocese of Tegucigalpa said on Thursday that Cardinal Óscar Rodríguez Maradiaga has tested positive for COVID-19 and is "stable and recovering" at a local private clinic. 

Fr. Rodolfo Varela, spokesman for the Honduran archdiocese, announced on Feb. 4 that Maradiaga, 78, felt "some flu-like symptoms on Tuesday and tested positive for COVID on Wednesday."

"He is stable and recovering, but resting at the clinic upon the request of his doctor," Fr. Varela added in a statement released by the Catholic television station TV Suyapa.

"The cardinal has asked Honduran Catholics to pray for him, but to turn their attention to all the people currently suffering from COVID in the country." 

Fr. Juan Ángel López, director of TV Suyapa, said: "The cardinal is diabetic and is 78 years old, so we have to take his condition seriously. He is now in the hands of Our Lady of Suyapa [Patroness of Honduras]."  

The television station broadcast a Holy Rosary on Thursday night to pray for the cardinal's swift recovery.

Cardinal Maradiaga is the coordinator of the Council of Cardinals, created in 2013 by Pope Francis to help him reform the Roman Curia and advise him in the government of the universal Church.

The council currently has seven members and has met 34 times since it was created. It is currently discussing the final draft of a new apostolic constitution on the Curia entitled "Praedicate evangelium" ("Preach the Gospel").

Honduras, with a population of 10 million, has registered more than 151,000 infected and almost 4,000 deaths from COVID-19.

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