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Cardinal George Takes a Tumble, Fractures Hip

By Shannon in News on Apr 8, 2007 6:53PM

As some would say, God, or what have you, works in mysterious ways. Some might call those ways cruel and unusual. Others might shrug their shoulders and say, "Que sera sera." (Those people are usually Portuguese or Hitchcock fans, we surmise.) Whatever's behind the Fickle Finger of Fate, it pointed straight at Cardinal Francis George on Saturday when he fell during a pre-Easter blessing ceremony and fractured his hip.

cardinal francis georgeCardinal George, an archbishop so famous even Chicagoist knows who he is, had before him the task of blessing Easter baskets full of food at St. Ferdinand Catholic Church on the Northwest Side. While sprinkling the baskets liberally with holy water, he slipped in some that had spilled onto the polished marble floor. He landed soundly on his hips in a sitting position, but managed to carry out the remainder of the service, garnering applause after returning to the altar. The pain forced him to go to Loyola Medical Center afterward, where an examination revealed a slight fracture in his right hip.

Luckily, the fracture is situated so that no surgery is needed; Cardinal George will merely have to use a walker to keep pressure off his hip until it heals. Unluckily, the necessity of bedrest meant that he wasn't be able to preside over Holy Name Cathedral's Easter service today. Nor will he be making a planned trip to the Vatican to celebrate 10 years of being a Catholic archbishop in Chicago. Archdiocese spokeswoman Colleen Dolan said the cardinal would conduct an Easter Mass from his hospital bed nonetheless, and that he felt "fine" and would be up and around in no time.

Image via Sed Contra.