Declaring that “I can say in all sincerity that I am at peace,” Cardinal Joseph Bernardin, Roman Catholic archbishop of Chicago, announced Friday that he has been told he has less than a year to live.
On Wednesday, his doctors discovered that the cancer for which he was treated over a year ago had returned, he said.
Doctors at Loyola University Medical Center discovered five cancerous nodules in his liver, which they said were inoperable, the 68-year-old prelate told a hastily called news conference at the Chicago archdiocesan offices.
The cardinal, who has been a leader of the liberal wing of the American Catholic hierarchy but also a frequent conciliator of factions within the church, turned aside questions regarding a successor in Chicago.
“I have been assured that I still have some quality time left,” Bernardin said. “I will continue to serve the archdiocese in the way I have in the past.”
Bernardin plans to deliver a major address on religion and politics at Georgetown University in Washington on Sept. 9, archdiocesan officials confirmed.