A new clinical trial of an experimental drug to treat cancer has left Cardinal Francis George feeling good, but not great, he said.

The head of the Archdiocese of Chicago spoke to reporters Monday after blessing a newly expanded religious retirement center. George, 77, started the trial to treat a recurrence of cancer near his right kidney. He said the second installment will be Wednesday.

“I’m feeling well enough, not great but not bad,” he said. “I think I’m doing all right but it’s hard to tell because I don’t know what to expect with the new treatment.”

George, the spiritual leader of the Chicago area’s more than 2 million Roman Catholics since 1997, said he would travel to Europe in November to meet with archbishops in Barcelona, Spain, and then to the Vatican. George canceled a trip to Rome in October because of medical treatment.

The archdiocese said earlier this year that a successor to George should be chosen this fall. George said if he has a chance to speak with Pope Francis in November he’s likely to ask the pope how he’s doing and tell him how he is doing.

“I haven’t had a chance to talk to him since the conclave, since he was elected,” George said. “So I’d like to hear his impressions of the job he’s got and I’ll tell him how I am.”