The cardinal, 87, was admitted Dec. 24 after he fell in St. Peter's Square during the entrance procession, when Susanna Maiolo, of Italian-Swiss citizenship and with a history of psychological disturbance, climbed over a barrier in an attempt to reach the Pope.

Despite the swift intervention of the police, the young woman was able to grab the Pope by the pallium, making him fall to the floor. The Pontiff was unhurt.

Cardinal Etchegaray, however, was taken to the hospital, where it was found that he had broken a hip and was in need of surgery.

He was operated on Dec. 27, and received a visit from Benedict XVI last Saturday.