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Pilgrims descend on the Vatican ahead of Sunday's double canonization

Jeff J. Mitchell/Getty Images

More than one million Catholics are expected in Rome today, ahead of Sunday’s double canonization of Popes John Paul II and John XXIII.

The crowds certainly appeared to be well on their way to that number, as pilgrims queued up outside of the Vatican, waiting to attend Sunday’s ceremony, officiated by Pope Francis. The canonization to sainthood of Pope John Paul II, who died in 2005, was considered certain, notes TIME, but the rapidity with which it is occurring is considered controversial by some.

Nevertheless, the atmosphere in Rome and the Vatican today was expectant and joyful — take a look at photos of the anticipatory pilgrims, below. --Sarah Eberspacher