Papal relics on display as double-canonization hype builds
Saturday, April 26, 2014 - 01:58
April 26 - Papal relics are on display at the Vatican ahead of an unprecedented double-canonization, as pilgrims from around the world make the trek, rain or shine. Gavino Garay reports.
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The hype ahead of a never before seen double canonization of two popes is mounting in St. Peter's Square.
In less than 24 hours time, Pope Francis will declare two of his former predecessors, Pope John XXIII and John Paul II, as saints.
It's something pilgrims from John Paul's hometown in Poland couldn't miss. They're making the trek to the canonization by train.
(SOUNDBITE) (Polish) PILGRIM, IRENA, SAYING: „
"I am taking a lot of wishes, and will ask John Paul II to take care of me, of my relatives, of those who asked me for prayer, and I promised prayer."
To add to the intrigue, the Vatican is displaying various Papal relics, which include a phial containing Pope John Paul II's blood and the papal cap of Pope John XXIII.
The great nephew of Pope John XXIII points out the connection between the soon to be canonized popes.
(SOUNDBITE) (Italian) GREAT NEPHEW OF POPE JOHN XXIII, MARCO RONCALLI, SAYING:
"To tell you the truth, I don't see any issue here. This isn't a prize that's given to super heroes, it's a strong confirmation, declaring a saint is a statement, a confirmation. I am actually pleased. I was also asked in Warsaw last week if one of the Popes will get more attention than the other but I think the strong connection between the two of them needs to be understood, this bond starting from the Second Vatican Council and in a sense Pope John Paul II felt like the son of John XXIII."
Pope John Paul II traveled exhaustively throughout his pontificate, making trips to places such as Cuba, Nigeria, and Syria. He was the first non-Italian pope in 455 years.
Rain or shine, pilgrims here won't let bad weather ruin the historic ceremony, which is expected to draw over one million spectators.
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