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Retired Archbishop Quinn moves from hospital to skilled nursing care

June 22, 2017

Retired Archbishop John R. Quinn moved to skilled nursing care at the Jewish Home of San Francisco on June 16 after a long stay at St. Mary’s Medical Center, Archbishop Salvatore J. Cordileone announced.

“The move reflects a decided improvement in the archbishop’s health, for which we give thanks to God,” Archbishop Cordileone said in a message to clergy. “This facility is known to many of you for its specialized care, which suits the archbishop’s needs at this time, and he has expressed his delight to be experiencing the fruits of interreligious cooperation that he has championed throughout his life.”

Archbishop Quinn, 88, who served from 1977-95 as sixth archbishop of San Francisco, had been hospitalized since November 2016 after experiencing complications from emergency surgery. He fell ill during a trip to Rome for the consistory that elevated 17 to the rank of cardinal, including Archbishop Quinn’s friend Cardinal Blase Cupich, archbishop of Chicago.

Archbishop Cordileone said he is “extremely grateful to the physicians and support staff at St. Mary’s for their excellent care of Archbishop John these past months, and to the thousands in our parishes and well beyond who have focused their prayers on him. Those prayers have been appreciated and effective.”

Archbishop Cordileone thanked the Jewish Home for its invitation to Archbishop Quinn. “He is feeling the warm welcome being extended his way!” he said.

Rita Semel, co-founder of the San Francisco Interfaith Council, “has also just been informed of this decision, and stated, ‘I am relieved and pleased to learn that Archbishop Quinn is well enough to leave the hospital to go to the Jewish Home for the next stage of his specialized care. He has been such a wonderful influence on our community for so many years, and I have valued his friendship. I know the people at the Jewish Home, and can attest to the good care he will receive while there!’” Archbishop Cordileone said.

Presentation Sister Rosina Conrotto, director of consecrated life for the archdiocese, noted that Archbishop Quinn has been a longtime friend of the religious of the archdiocese.

As head of the Pontifical Commission on Religious Life from June 1983 through October 1986, “he appointed women religious from the Archdiocese of San Francisco to be members of his commission and drew on the collective wisdom of women religious throughout the United States for input on his report,” she said in an email to Catholic San Francisco. “Throughout the entire process he was honest, respectful and grateful for the help he received.”

She added that Archbishop Quinn preached at an eight-day retreat three years ago at Vallombrosa Center “and to this day I hear women religious say, ‘I wish it could have been eight days longer.’ One sister said to me, ‘When Archbishop Quinn speaks, my heart grows.’ These are beautiful tributes to a holy man of God.

“I have been moved by his keen intellect, his deep spirituality, his wonderful sense of humor, his incredible memory and his skill at the piano,” Sister Rosina said. “When I was told that he was being transferred from St. Mary’s Medical Center to the Jewish Home I first said a prayer of gratitude that he has progressed to the point where he could be moved and then I smiled because I knew that moving to a site that was under the direction of the Jewish community would delight him. I can almost hear some of the theological discussions that will take place.”

“Please continue to keep Archbishop Quinn in your prayers throughout his transition ahead,” Archbishop Cordileone said, noting that visitors are restricted at this time.

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