The Pope – Rock Star for the Nuns…Axl Rose – Rock Star for the Cougars…Are the two really that different?

On Wednesday April 25th I was part of the Papal audience at St. Peter’s Square, therefore knocking item #2 off my list. We had bought tickets with a tour group before we left so that we would get guaranteed seating.

The morning of April 25th we were up bright and early because we had to meet with the tour guide at 8:00 in St. Peter’s square, she suits us up with headsets and tells us about the history of the Vatican. At 8:30 we are fighting our way through the masses making a mad dash to get the best seats possible. Once seated you have about 2 hours to kill before the Pope makes his appearance. This is a good time to take in your surroundings.

The Square is set up for the event; we have concert seating, jumbo tron’s in front of the statue of St. Peter and St. Paul. Security consisted of The Swiss Guard and Papal secret service that were decked out in Armani suits and wearing Ray-Bans.  Religious groups, choirs, schools from all over the world were in attendance that day. The biggest fans were the Sister’s from Mexico. These wild nuns were waving banners that said “You enlighten my world”… Ok I do not know what the banners said but I really do not think I am that far off the mark. Also the wild nuns of Mexico would scream and holler every time the camera scanned the crowd. Its Nun’s gone wild live at St. Peter’s Square, very similar to the front row Cougars at an Axl Rose concert.

The Pope was to appear at 10am but he pulls an Axl Rose and he does not roll out until 10:45. I mean he literally rolls out; he is in the Pope mobile being driven through the square so that he can wave at his screaming, adoring fans. He loops the square a couple of times before he is driven up to his podium. Once at the his podium he stands for a moment, just basking in the cheering and hysterics of the crowd possibly catching a Rosary or two thrown by the wild nuns of Mexico.

Once seated the rest of the Pope Posse take center stage, in this case it’s the Cardinal’s of The Vatican. Seven different Cardinals representing seven different languages came to the mike to do ‘Shout Outs’ to the crowd. The Cardinal of France did a shout out to a French choir that started to sing for the Pope and I have to say it was one of the most beautiful things I have ever heard. The crowd goes wild and the Pope sitting in his throne raises his hand to wave at the choir. He did this every time a ‘Shout Out’ was made. This went on for almost an hour than the Pope does his speech in all seven languages and finally at noon he gets up and stands center stage to bless the crowd.

The masses start to exit the square and the Pope Posse lines up on stage to kiss the Pope’s ring, now that makes him the ultimate Rock Star.

If you plan to visit Rome I really do think you should put this on your list, it is a long morning so bring water and snacks but it is quite the spectacle to see. Beside when will you ever get a chance to be part of a Papal Audience, really it’s only in Rome and as they say ‘When in Rome”.

To get free tickets to attend the Papal Audience you can get them on your own by filling out the following form http://www.vaticantour.com/images/Vatican_Ticket_request.pdf.

Or you can get them through a tour group; you have to pay but you get a guide that tells you about the history of the Vatican and does the fighting to get great seats for you.

**Current Buddha bank total $70 for 7 task completed on my list.

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