Pope Francis Prepares For Installation Mass Tuesday


UPDATED: Monday March 18, 2013 3:27 PM

The Vatican is releasing details of Pope Francis’ installation Mass on Tuesday as well images of his coat of arms and fisherman's ring.

The ring that Pope Francis will put on during the Mass once belonged to Pope Paul VI, and is made of gold-plated silver.

Francis' papal coat of arms is based on the same simple one as he had previously, with the symbol of his Jesuit order.

In addition to more than 132 government delegations, the Vatican said 33 Christian delegations will be present, as well as representatives from Jewish, Muslim, Buddhist, Sikh and Jain communities.

A spokesperson for the Vatican said on Monday that all countries were welcome to attend the inaugural mass for Pope Francis.

The Vatican says it did not issue invitations for the pope's inauguration on Tuesday. But representatives of world governments are welcome to attend.

"The Holy See does not invite any country or foreign delegation or country or leader to come to this particular ceremony. We inform the world that this is taking place. Those who wish to come are welcomed, no-one is refused, they may come and take part in the ceremony," said Vatican Press Secretary Father Thomas Rosica in a media briefing.

As well as the official delegations, hundreds of thousands of people are expected to cram St. Peter's Square and surrounding streets for the mass to formally install Latin America's first pontiff as the new leader of the world's 1.2 billion Roman Catholics.
And the square is likely to be packed from dawn.

"Tomorrow morning at 0850, ten minutes to nine, the Pope will leave Santa Martha, he will get into the vehicle, whether it be the jeep or the pope mobile that will drive him through the square. So as many people as possible can see him," added Rosica.

For the enthronement of the Pope, traffic chaos is expected but Romans will be compensated with free underground transport for the hardships they will have to endure.

Since his election last week as the first non-European pope in nearly 1,300 years, Francis has signaled a sharp change of style from his more aloof predecessor, Benedict, and laid out a clear moral path for the 1.2-billion-member Church, which is beset by scandals, intrigue and strife.

The new pope's outgoing nature and sense of humor differs notably from the much more formal Benedict, who last month became the first pope in 600 years to resign.

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