Half a million people will head to Dublin’s Phoenix Park this summer to see Pope Francis say mass during his visit to Ireland.
The Pope is coming to Ireland for the World Meeting of Families. He will be the first Pope to set foot on Irish soil in almost 40 years.
When Pope John Paul II visited in 1979, he conducted an open air mass for 1.25 million people, and, while it looks like Pope Francis will not pull in quite such a large crowd, it will still be attended by a huge number of people.
On Monday, 45,000 free tickets were released for the Pope’s visit to Knock for the World Meeting Of Families, at 5am. They had all gone as early as 9.12am.
Both the Knock Shine celebrations and the RDS Pastoral Congress have already reached capaity.
So far 285,000 out of 500,000 tickets have been booked for the Pope Francis’ Phoenix Park mass.
The Pope’s visit will take place on the 25 and 26 August. The two major events are the Festival Of Families in Croke Park on August 25 and the Final Mass in Phoenix Park on August 26.
Tickets weren’t made available for the Festival Of Families but it is thought that some will be given away to homeless and vulnerable members of society.
A spokesman said: “Any extra places would be made available to the homeless, refugees, to those working with or supporting those dealing with drug addiction, those helping families in need in our society.
“These were the people Pope Francis wants to have near him, that he wants to meet.”
The Pope is also planning to visit Dublin’s Capuchin Day Centre for Homeless while he is in Ireland.
Written by Michael Kehoe @michaelcalling