Talk of Cardinal George's successor begins - FOX 35 News Orlando

Talk of Cardinal George's successor begins

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

Cardinal Francis George talked candidly Friday about his health and cancer treatment. He wants the pope to be able to identify his replacement in time for an easy transition.

"You know as you have chemo, you have good days and bad days, today's a pretty good day," Cardinal George said.

Cardinal George appeared in good spirits as he talked about his health and the process for naming his successor to lead the Chicago Archdiocese's two-million Catholics. It's a process the Cardinal has asked the Apostolic Nuncio, the official Papal envoy in Washington DC, to begin.

"The fact that my health is uncertain, it isn't just a question of imminent death, I'm not going to be dying, I don't think in the next few months, but it's a question of being able to spend your entire energy on what is my responsibility as Archbishop of Chicago," added Cardinal George.

Earlier this week, the Cardinal talked of his frustration at not being able to travel to Rome for the canonization of Popes John the 23rd and John Paul the 2nd. This is because his chemo treatments will leave him vulnerable to infection.

Cardinal George is now shifting his attention to helping the Nuncio find the next Archbishop of Chicago.

"He starts with me, he writes me and says give me a sense of the Archdiocese and names that you think might possibly succeed you," said Cardinal George.

The Nuncio eventually recommends three names and the Pope can pick George's successor from that list, or choose someone else.

At Mass Friday at Holy Name, thoughts turned to the Cardinal's future.

"We appreciate all he's done, we give him our prayers for his health and his future," said Richard Godfrey of Holy Name church.

With his health uncertain, the Cardinal hopes the process can happen quickly, so he can meet his successor.

"I know some of the pitfalls, I know a lot of the people and if he wants to ask questions, I'll be available. So, it's a service that a retired Bishop can offer to his successor if he wants to take it," said Cardinal George.

That process, however, is confidential, and it could take some time.

Despite the Cardinal's health and chemo treatments, George still intends to participate in the holy week services and Easter Sunday mass at Holy Name Cathedral.

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