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Wednesday's audience with the Pope

Is the Wed. audience with Pope Benedict worth the time and crowds? Do we get to see him close and personal?

Posted by
10344 posts

It's outside in the Piazza and you're in an audience with several thousand (up to 10,000? the Piazza is that big) who are also having an "audience" with the Pope. This is not the indoor audience you see on TV that VIPs get where they are able to approach him in a receiving line one on one.

Posted by
2207 posts

Once the Pope "settles in" for the audience you are back from the stage, perhaps you may get as close as 100 feet.

Note, as he enters the square, he has walked up to the crowds and kissed babies, touched people, etc - much to the "fear" of the Swiss Guard who act like our secret service. So I have known a couple of Americans who have stood face-to-face with the Pope as he entered! Lucky them!

Most often though he heads directly to the stage and starts the mass/audience. To get close in one of the outdoor audiences you must have a pass, because all the seating is down front, and you cannot get that close without a pass.

Yet, at Easter Mass, my friends and I, no pass in hand, managed to get inside the first ring and grab a seat, We were about 150 feet away - Course it POURED rain on us for about 2 hours, but it was still a great experience!

Kent is correct; it's you and at least 10,000 other folks! Lately the crowds have been very large but it is worth going!


Posted by
23 posts

While the Wednesday audience is quite crowded, you may see Pope Benedict close-up when he rides throughout the crowd in the "popemobile."

Last year my daughter and I showed up the Tuesday afternoon before the Wednesday audience and got tickets from the Swiss Guards to the right of St. Peter's up a set of tall stairs. We had just arrived from New Orleans and were thrilled........then the next morning we overslept recovering from jetlag and arrived late just as the audience was beginning and had to stand in the back. We were thrilled to see Pope Benedict up close at the beginning when he rode throughout the crowd in the popemobile.

So for us, yes, it was electrifying to be with so many people from so many countries throughout the world! There was much excitement going and we are returning again in June and hope to go again with our family, even with thousands!


Posted by
208 posts

When our RS tour group arrived on Wed morn I found a guard in a blue coat (not the clown suit) and asked him where the Pope would enter and where he would be in the Popemobile and he lead our group to the section to the front of where the mobile goes so we were about 5ft from the Pope. The RS tour guide said it was because I spoke Spanish and I smiled. She said Italian women don't smile at strange men. I told her it was amazing the doors that are opened in Rome by a smile. ;)

We were not there overly early and we walked up way on the right side of the piazza.

Posted by
64 posts

We just returned and the Papal Blessing was awesome as we had special tickets thru our parish so we were in the front row around the stage....I would recommend it and if you have any contacts try that jo

Posted by
411 posts

You can also get tickets through Santa Susanna the American Catholic church in Rome. If you dont' have tickets you can still get in --- just have to stand in the back which was fine. VERY moving. There are some readings then the Pope makes a short statement then he greats the visitors in several languages.

You can also see the Pope on Sunday at noon in St Peter's when he leads the group in the Angelus. Not as good a look at Il Papa as it's from his apartment window but still very special.

NOTE that the audiences and the Angelus can be cancelled due to the Pope's schedule and usually are cancelled when the Pope is at the summer residence (I belive Castel Gandolfo?) in August.

Posted by
41 posts

You get to see the Pope ride around in one of his Popemobiles, which depending on where you are, might get you close, you listen to him talk in 5-6 other languages which you don't understand, you hear him in English which, because of his accent, is hard to understand and this over all the thousands of other people who are talking except when he is speaking in their language, and this is on top of people standing in front of you, the heat, etc. etc. etc. Is it worth it-no question. If you're a cradle Catholic like my wife and I and our two children, can you really pass up an opportunity to see the Pope while in Rome. Just go-it's the opportunity of a lifetime and one you'll be glad you took advantage of when you get home and one you'll always wish you had of taken advantage of if you don't. Besides, you get to hear all the schoolchildren who come yell "Benedicto".