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A coughing Pope Francis told pilgrims gathered for the traditional Sunday blessing that he is canceling his participation at a week-long spiritual retreat in the Roman countryside because of a cold.(AP)

Coughing Pope pulls out of spiritual retreat amid Italy’s coronavirus alarm

By Associated Press | Vatican City
UPDATED ON MAR 02, 2020 06:50 AM IST
It is the first time in his seven-year papacy that he has missed the spiritual exercises that he initiated early in his pontificate to mark the start of each Lenten season.
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