Archbishop on the Road to Rehabilitation

Catholic Communications, Sydney Archdiocese,
8 Jan 2016

Messages of support, well wishes and prayers have been streaming in for the Archbishop of Sydney as he recovers from an immune related condition in St Vincent's Hospital.

Archbishop Anthony Fisher OP is responding well to medical treatment since being diagnosed with Guillain-Barré Syndrome just after Christmas, and will soon be on the road to rehabilitation.

Symptoms of the condition include varying degrees of muscle weakness, and while its onset is sudden and unexpected, the great majority of people make a full recovery.

Friends, family, colleagues, supporters and Catholics from all around Australia and internationally have been expressing their heartfelt support via email, phone, text and social media.

Youth networks throughout the Archdiocese communicated quickly about the need for prayers when the Archbishop was first diagnosed and will gather for a night of prayer this Saturday 9 January at Sacred Heart Parish, Darlinghurst. Young people from Catholic Youth Services, Catholic University Chaplaincies, University of Notre Dame and Australian Catholic University have joined together to alert their networks and host the night. Hundreds of university students, young people, and youth from parishes across greater Sydney are expected to attend.

Amongst hundreds of messages received was one from the Sisters of St Joseph across NSW who will today begin a novena to St Mary MacKillop for the Archbishop's speedy and complete recovery.

Archbishop Fisher is most grateful for the messages of support he has received and for the prayers offered for him.

The Archbishop today asked for this message to be passed on through his social media channels and the Archdiocese of Sydney to give people an update on his condition:

"I appreciate all the good wishes and prayers since I've been here at St Vincent's Hospital from just before Christmas. It's been quite a challenge but the medical team here have been terrific.

One of the complications with Guillain-Barré syndrome is the effect it has on all the muscles which restricts movement, however, yesterday I was able to stand for a few moments which was very encouraging.

Obviously I have a long way to go but doctors now say I'm on the road to rehabilitation.

Please keep up your prayers for me and be assured I am praying for all of you.

I look forward to giving your further updates."

Please continue to pray for the Archbishop's recovery.

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Messages of support can be sent here.