Friday, January 11, 2008

Diocese of Albany, NY Scrambles for Tickets

Citizens of Albany, NY scramble to get tickets to the NYC papal mass - Marc Parry of the Albany Times-Union reports:

As many as 3,000 requests have already arrived from people hoping for some of the roughly 450 tickets allotted to the Albany Diocese. Lucky pilgrims will be picked by random drawing.

The diocesan newspaper, The Evangelist, is handling the free tickets. The requests already fill four postal bins. They come from Albany and Altamont, from Gloversville and Gilboa -- even from an inmate at Coxsackie prison.

"Does he think he's going to get a furlough to go to New York?" wondered Mary Breig, circulation director for the newspaper. [...]

The amount of mail piling up has put to rest any question whether the public Mass would generate the same interest as ones celebrated by John Paul, who visited the United States five times during his pontificate.

"I think it's not just the individual, but the office," James Breig said. "People recognize this is the head of our church -- we have to go see him regardless of who it is. It is for most people a once-in-a-lifetime experience."