But there were fears that the extraordinary security — including airport-style bag searches, crowd-control cattle chutes and blocked-off streets — would scare many people away and result in a turnout far below organizers’ expectations.
Thomas Coorey, a dentist and father of four visiting Philadelphia from Sydney, called Francis “the most inspirational and amazing pope that could breathe life into this church of mine. And I’m so grateful to have a leader like him who’s so humble and such a true servant of God.”
It has been a common sentiment throughout the pope’s visit to Washington, New York and Philadelphia.
“It’s the wave. It’s the smile,” said Tom Hambrose, 52, of Haddon Heights, New Jersey. “It’s what he’s articulating, that the church needs to step forward and needs to change its thinking about things.”
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