Thousands pay last respects to Pope John XXIII

 Thousands of pilgrims have been filing past the body of Pope John XXIII in Rome. The body of the much-loved Pope, who died in 1963, went on display in a glass coffin in St Peter's Square in the Vatican on Sunday during a Mass conducted by Pope John Paul II. The decision to place the body on view was made after Vatican officials opened Pope John XXIII's coffin in January, in preparation for its transfer from a Vatican crypt, and discovered it to be remarkably well preserved. Officials dismissed any suggestion that this was the result of a miracle. They point out that the body had been well protected by embalming. Pope John XXIII's final resting place will be in a side chapel near the main altar by the St Peter. He was beatified last September.

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