Religion: The Catholic Olympics

Past cardinals in a reviewing stand and down Philadelphia's Independence Mall, strode a platoon of nuns to the tune of When the Saints Go Marching In. In the swelling parade came cheerleaders leading parochial-school bands, chanting Pueblo Indians in full feathered regalia and flag-waving marchers representing each of Pennsylvania's 1,486 Roman Catholic parishes. The 41st International Eucharistic Congress, one of the largest religious spectacles in U.S. history, was under way.

The calendar was so crowded that the eight-day faith festival was inevitably dubbed the "Catholic Olympics." There were Masses for children and the physically handicapped, blacks and Ruthenians, even a military Mass...

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