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Chairs of the faithful: Commemorative Pope Francis seats go on sale ahead of Phoenix Park mass

The chair, made from 100% recyclable cardboard, can withhold a weight of up to 100kg.

The commemorative Pope Francis chair, which is available for €18.95
The commemorative Pope Francis chair, which is available for €18.95
Image: Smurfit Kappa

AN IRISH ENTREPRENEUR has answered the prayers of pilgrims attending this month’s papal mass in the Phoenix Park by creating a special chair for the occasion.

Dubliner John McGarry has designed a portable seat for mass-goers who would otherwise have to stand for hours when Pope Francis leads mass at the park on August 26.

The chair, which is sold flat and takes seconds to assemble, is made from 100% recyclable corrugated cardboard, can withhold a weight of up to 100kg, and even features an image of the Pope on its side.

McGarry revealed that he received divine inspiration for the chair when he found himself standing for long periods during sporting events and concerts.

And with over half a million people set to gather in the Phoenix Park to see Pope Francis, he felt it was the perfect time to launch the chair.

To bring his idea to life, McGarry approached Smurfit Kappa Display in Tallaght with the idea and worked with a team there, testing designs and prototypes.

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He said: “I heard that people could be on their feet for up to eight hours when they go to see the Pope. This chair is very lightweight and has a handle so it’s completely portable.

“Alongside being a great souvenir of this historic day, it’s completely biodegradable and made from Forest Stewardship Council approved paper.”

The chair, which is selling for €18.95, has already been a massive hit with pilgrims, who can now look forward to a day of rest when they attend the historic mass.

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