Here are photos of Rome in the aftermath of the beatification of Pope John Paul II on May 1st. We’ll soon have a post of the Pope’s relationship with Rome at a local level, as Karol Wojtyla lived with and in the city differently to other popes. Seeing these pictures, it’s sometimes easy to forget that the Vatican is an independent state given the tourism boost such an event provides to Rome.
More than one million pilgrims came to the Pope John Paul II beatification, crowding the streets and trying for their place in St Peter’s Square. These are the images of what comes after such a mass gathering, with religion and patriotism for far flung pilgrim countries celebrated in equal measure.
Unfortunately, we can also see what a state the Eternal City was left in for the beatification of one man in a history of more than 2,764 years, according to the recent April 21st Rome birthday. It’s a strange way to see the city after the Pope himself was such a protagonist in recent history. In the meantime, the rest of the world discovered that Bin Laden had died in the midst of a beatification of a pope….
After the excitement of today’s royal wedding, Sunday May 1st marks the beatification of Pope John Paul II and the Vatican is preparing itself for a serious influx of pilgrims. Not quite religious tourism in Rome, it marks an extremely special event for the city and the Italian media is full of sincere dedications to one of history’s most popular popes.
Our colleagues at 06blog are calling it Papa-mania (or pope-mania) on the streets of Rome, quoting the Inquirer who talks of the posters celebrating the beautification which adorn the souvenir shops of Rome. It says: “A large souvenir shop on the edge of [St Peter’s] square has oil portraits of questionable taste and a life-size statue next to which tourists pose.”
As we already suggested above, Fox heads its beatification piece with the title “Royal Wedding takes spotlight from Vatican’s beatification.” Apparently the estimated number of pilgrims has droppped, although Italian media last night was still carrying the estimated figure of about a million in Rome for the beatification. More after the jump.
Pilgrims to the Vatican and Rome for the beatification of Pope John Paul II on May 1st are being asked by Italian police to be careful of any ticketing schemes. They are emphasising that the beatification event is free, after an American is under investigation for a ticketing scam related to the religious celebration.
The American tour guide is suspected of selling fake tickets costing 166 euros to the beatification, and of using the website “vaticancitytours.com” to sell them. Police have searched the suspect’s home where some beatification ‘vouchers’ were found’. With the event free, and two million pilgrims expect in Rome for Pope John Paul’s beatification, visitors are being asked to be vigilant of such schemes.
Source | Italymag