Primary Sources

Papal Visit of 1987


When Pope John Paul II arrived in Warsaw during his 1987 "pilgrimage" he drove from the airport to the Primate's palace. A huge crowd turned out to greet him and flowers were laid out along the street that he was scheduled to travel. This pattern was repeated throughout his visit, wherever he went. Though tens of thousands of people lined the roads just to see him pass by, and millions attended his open-air masses, the entire state apparatus seemed to vanish for those few summer days. Crowd control was managed almost entirely by volunteers (they can be identified by their sky-blue paper hats). Even the motorcycle escorts of the "popemobile" were provided by the Church, not the Communist state.


Brian Porter, Papal Visit of 1987 (Poland, 14 June 1987), courtesy of Brian Porter.

How to Cite this Source

Brian Porter, "Papal Visit of 1987," Making the History of 1989, Item #551, (accessed May 28 2021, 3:24 pm).