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Rome Reports

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Two million expected to see Pope Francis in Philadelphia

Philadelphia is preparing to receive about two million visitors during Pope Francis' trip in late September, during a meeting with families from around the world.

MSGR. VINCENZO PAGLIA

President, Pontifical Council for the Family

"It's an extraordinary event, the officials have said that they expect it to be one of the largest meetings that has taken place in the country. And so I give thanks to the mayor and to the archbishop for their preparations.�

MGSR. JOHN J. MCINTYRE

Auxiliary Bishop of Philadelphia

 "With the festival of families on the park on Saturday evening, September 26th, it could be up to a million people, and then for the papal Mass, we don't know until the day of Sunday, September 27th,we expect something between 1.5 and 2 million people.â?

MICHAEL NUTTER

Mayor of Philadelphia (USA)

"We are very ready, we've been planning for over a year. We have worked very closely with the World Meeting of Families Philadelphia, of course with Archbishop Chaput and those of the archdiocese, but also our counterparts in the Vatican and in Rome.�

The event is self-financed but it will generate about $45 million in security and cleaning costs.

MSGR. CHARLES JOSEPH CHAPUT

Archbishop of Philadelphia (USA)

"If it is just money and energy for two days, it would be a foolish waste of resources, personal resources and financial resources  If we encourage husbands and wives to talk to one another more honestly and profoundly, be careful with children in more secure kind of ways, and then encourage the neighbors to do the same and the grandchildren to do the same I think it can be a force for transformation of society.â?

To prepare, the city will hold an international congress for which 12,000 people have already signed up. It will show the success stories of families who have been helped.

LUCILLE FRANCESCO

World Meeting of Families Philadelphia 2015

"For us as a married couple, it is a great opportunity to emphasize love, which is so, so important. It's important for our children to know what love is. That's where they learn about love, in the family. And we feel that it is so important. So we are honored and thrilled and delighted to be here, and I hope you are all coming to Philadelphia.�

Pope John Paul II created the World Meeting of Families. Popes have convened them seven times since 1994. The last took place in Milan in 2012.

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