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Pilgrims wait overnight around the Vatican ahead of service to canonise two popes

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Pilgrims wait overnight around the Vatican ahead of service to canonise two popes

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Pilgrims are continuing to pour into the Vatican ahead of Sunday’s historic service in which two former popes will be canonised.

Amongst the crowds there was a mixture of quiet devotion and joyful celebration.

In Krakow in Poland, people gathered in front of the Bishop’s Palace, where Pope John Paul II lived in the 1960s and 1970s. He was known for standing at the window and having jokey exchanges with thousands of people who would stand below.

“He’s like a father, I knew him very well, 20 years ago I came to Rome and took part in an audience with him. We were all excited.” said pilgrim Bruno Vecchi

Some had come to Poland as an alternative to being in Rome.

Molly Hamilton had come from Belfast for the occasion.

“He was just such a special man,” she said. “He’s a legend, you know, and it’s really, really well-deserved. We came from Ireland to Poland to be here for his canonisation, because we could not get to Rome.”

It’s the first time two Popes will be canonised in the same service, elevating Pope John Paul II and Pope John XXIII to the status of saints.