CARDINAL SIN HOSPITALIZED FOR CONVULSIONS

Manila, March 30, 2003 --  Cardinal Jaime Sinwas brought to a hospital 
Sunday after experiencing convulsions, his spokesman Bishop Socrates 
Villegas said.

Sin, 74, was in stable condition and was undergoing a series of tests, 
including a CT scan, to determine the cause of the convulsions, said.

Sin suffered convulsions after celebrating Mass at a chapel in his villa in 
suburban Mandaluyong city, Villegas said. His doctors would make a report 
on his condition later Sunday, he said.

"The cardinal can talk and has, in fact, been complaining to the doctors 
about the battery of tests that he is being subjected to," Villegas said. 
He urged the faithful to refrain from visiting him and instead offer 
prayers for his swift and complete recovery.

Sin, known for his vocal stance on many issues, considerably reduced his 
public appearances several years ago because of kidney problems, which 
prompted him to undergo dialysis.

In 1986, Sin called on the public to surround a police and a military camp 
in metropolitan Manila to protect then military vice chief of staff Fidel 
Ramos and Defense Minister Juan Ponce Enrile who broke away from strongman 
Ferdinand Marcos.

That led to the "people power" revolution that ousted the dictator over 
alleged corruption and human rights violations. The largely peaceful revolt 
became a harbinger of change in authoritarian regimes worldwide. Marcos 
died in exile in Hawaii in 1989.

Sin also led large street protests that led to the ouster of President 
Joseph Estrada over alleged corruption and misrule two years ago.

Under Sin's leadership, the country's powerful Catholic church has opposed 
calls to change the Philippine constitution, saying it could endanger 
provisions safeguarding the nation from the rise of dictatorships.

Reported by: Sol Jose Vanzi

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