"Everyone knows the more you wear pearls, little by little they become real....And isn't it the same with memories?" - The Madwoman of Chaillot

Monday, April 5, 2010

Easter Mass at the Vatican

Got up early to get to the Vatican for Easter Mass which is held in the piazza San Pietro (St Peter's). We walked to the Vatican arriving about 8:40 and the line was already quite long for ticketholders. The whole queue process was a little crazy. We didn't expect so long a wait but there were a huge number already in line. Those with no tickets got in quicker but they were far in back and had no chairs. (and no security check)
After a wait if about an hour we made it through security (metal scanner and xray anything you are carrying) and we were actually led to seats in the front section of the cheap seats and were closer than many who came in earlier so maybe not getting there so early was good.

Unfortunately it rained most of the time but stopped during communion or walking up in crowded aisles would have been impossible.

I got some better pictures on my big camera with the telephoto lens.

Naturally the experience would have been better on a sunny day but the determination of people to be there was impressive. A few left immediately after their first glance of the pope which was nice as the chairs had been very crowded.

The man sitting next to me struck up a conversation while we waited for Mass to start. He asked if I spoke English and then asked where we were from. Took a few tries to get USA or America across to him so not sure how good his English is. He and is wife, and son or daughter and grandchildren had come from India. Behind us we heard people speaking German and French. Saw two small boys huddled under an umbrella the whole time, but they were following along in the mass book you could buy, in German. More pictures later....

It was an experience of something you never think you will see with your own eyes. There is some criticism of the Pope and how I would have loved to have seen John Paul II but still this is our Pope and with all the ceremony and all the people it was a very moving experience. When the handshake of peace was done, we shook hands with people from at least 4-5 countries, at the Pater Noster, voices in many languages all called on one "our father".

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