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Almost 80,000 pilgrims expected for finale of Eucharistic Congress

Croke Park is close to being sold out for the event, at which pilgrims will watch a message from Pope Benedict.

Pilgrims at the RDS earlier this week
Pilgrims at the RDS earlier this week
Image: Shawn Pogatchnik/AP/Press Association Images

CROKE PARK STADIUM is expected to be near capacity for the final mass of the 50th International Eucharistic Congress, which will take place today.

A spokesperson for the Congress told TheJournal.ie earlier this week that only a small number of the stadium’s 80,000 seats at the very top of the stands remained on sale for the event.

A statement on the tickets.ie website this morning says that tickets are no longer available online, but some will be on sale at the event itself.

Most of the tickets have been allocated to parishes around Ireland, and to the estimated 7,000 pilgrims who are attending the Congress from overseas.

The Mass will be celebrated by the pope’s representative, Cardinal Marc Ouellet. There had been speculation that Pope Benedict XVI himself would attend the event, but it was decided that he would remain in Rome.

Pilgrims will watch an eight-minute pre-recorded message from the pontiff, according to RTÉ which will broadcast the event live.

A garda cordon will be in place around the stadium from 11am, and a number of roads will be closed with diversions in place. The cordon is expected to be lifted at around 7pm.

Read: Here’s why people are attending the Eucharistic Congress>

More: Pilgrim ponchos and altar wine – the Eucharistic Congress in numbers>

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About the author:

Michael Freeman

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