In 1979, a third of the population of Ireland gathered in Phoenix Park to see Pope John Paul II. My friend Sarah Carey was eight then, and remembers it with admirable clarity:
Then began communion. How do you give communion to one million two hundred and fifty thousand people? I remember lines and lines of bishops and priests dispersing throughout the crowd and somehow it was all done. Cardinal O’Fiaich’s face was prominent and he seemed to be everywhere. What a moment it must have been for him. Then came even more thrills. The tour of the popemobile around the crowd!
On a related note, Angelo Fernando describes meeting the Pope on that same world tour.
UPDATE: What’s there to say about the Pope dying? He both did a lifetime of good works, and was the leader of a frequently backwards and harmful global power. Regardless, I think this is the CBC’s shortest headline ever.