Cardinal Hume has cancer

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The Independent Online
CARDINAL BASIL HUME, the leader of the Roman Catholic Church in England and Wales, yesterday revealed that he is suffering from the advanced stages of cancer.

In letters to Catholic bishops in England and Wales and to priests in his archdiocese of Westminster, the 76-year-old cardinal said he intends to carry on working for as long as possible and that he is determined to see the new millennium.

"I have received two wonderful graces," he wrote. "I have been given time to prepare for a new future. Secondly, I find myself - uncharacteristically - calm and at peace ... The future is in God's hands. I am determined to see the Holy Year in."

Cardinal Hume was admitted to hospital for tests last Sunday and stayed in until Thursday.

He was due to retire a year ago, on his 75th birthday, but the Pope insisted that he stay on in the position he has held for the past 23 years.