With all of the media attacks against the Pope over the past several months it seems that there efforts have been thwarted as over 150,000 strong appear in St. Peter's Square in the rain to support the Pope's efforts to clean up the scandal in the Church.
A crowd estimated by the Vatican at 150,000 filled St. Peter's Square on Sunday in a major show of support for Pope Benedict XVI over the clerical sex abuse scandal.
Such large crowds are usually reserved for major holiday Masses and canonizations, not for Benedict's brief Sunday blessings from his studio window. The crowd interrupted Benedict frequently with applause and shouts of "Benedetto!" and the pontiff himself strayed from his prepared remarks to thank them again and again.
"Thank you for your presence and trust," he said. "All of Italy is here."
Rome's center-right Mayor Gianni Alemanno was in the crowd, along with other pro-Vatican Italian officials.
"We want to show our solidarity to the pope and transmit the message that single individuals make mistakes but institutions, faith and religion cannot be questioned," Alemanno told Associated Press Television News. "We will not allow this."
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