Fresno Bishop John Steinbock battling lung cancer, blood clots
Bishop John Steinbock remains hospitalized in critical but stable condition in the intensive care unit at Saint Agnes Medical Center in Fresno after complaining weeks ago of shortness of breath and flagging energy.
Bishop Steinbock, 73, was diagnosed with lung cancer in August. Various press accounts, citing a diocesan spokesman and hospital officials, said the bishop had developed blood clots in his legs and lungs. One report described his condition as "guarded."
The bishop’s condition is so serious that his physicians have advised that he have virtually no visitors because his condition requires uninterrupted rest. He has been at St. Agnes for more than two weeks.
Bishop Steinbock became leader of the Fresno diocese in 1991. Since his cancer diagnosis, he has written about his illness on the diocesan website, writing on Oct. 1, “Cancer of itself is not a gift, but the grace to accept it, embrace it, and give thanks for it, is the greater gift of God within me, so that Jesus may continue his passion in me, so that Jesus may continue to glorify His Father in me, so Jesus may testify to His great love in my life, so that we may realize that a greater life awaits us.”
Diocesan spokesman Rev. Jesse Avila told the Fresno Bee that get well cards for the bishop can be mailed to the chancery at 1550 N. Fresno St., Fresno, CA 93703.
In an email yesterday to California Catholic Daily, Charles Culbreth of the Office for Music and Worship in Visalia wrote, “From our pastor, as well as some published news sources: Bishop John's blood clotting issues have both presented in his legs, but more urgently in his lungs. By what was said, I infer he is not intubated, but is receiving oxygen constantly in the ICU via mask delivery. He cannot receive any visitations, apparently even from our Vicar General. When we all have a moment… prayer… Through Christ, our Lord, Amen.”
Sources said the bishop remains upbeat and confident that he will come out of this current hospitalization.
To read Bishop Steinbock’s reflections about his illness, “The Affliction of Cancer -- An Essay On A Christian Perspective,” Click Here
This is my brother's bishop.