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Battling illness, Cardinal Foley retires to native Philadelphia

February 28, 2011

Cardinal John Foley has resigned and returned home to his native Philadelphia, six months after learning that he suffers from leukemia.

Cardinal Foley, who is 75, served at the Vatican as President of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications from 1984 until 2007, when he was appointed grandmaster of the Knights of the Holy Sepulchre. He was elevated to the College of Cardinals by Pope Benedict XVI that same year.

Cardinal Foley submitted his resignation to Pope Benedict early this month, explaining that the progress of his illness has drained his energy and made it impossible for him to fulfill his duties. The Vatican has not yet officially announced his retirement.


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