Mass on Parkway follows a papal parade

The papal Mass on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway -- a massive, open-air event capping off Pope Francis' first trip to the United States -- has ended.

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(Read full text of Pope Francis's homily [PDF])

The pontiff celebrated the Mass from an altar at Eakins Oval and huge crowds lined the Parkway for the event.

The service included multiple languages, a nod to the diversity of the audience: The Gloria in Latin, one reading in Spanish, another in Vietnamese. The Gospel was in English. Concelebrants hailed from all over the globe, including the Philippines, Colombia, and Africa.

The pope, who spoke in halting English for a greeting and delivered his homily in his native Spanish, was seated on a simple high throne below a crucifix.

On his way to the Parkway, Francis waved to the cheering crowds as he rode through Center City.

Francis was welcomed by swarms of people along the Parkway during the parade. He stepped out of the popemobile near the Basilica to huge cheers, and kissed babies along the route. At the Knotted Grotto, where 100,000 prayers are written on strips of paper and now blessed by the pope, he shook the hand of Sister Mary Scullion.

Security lines, meanwhile, remained long and backed up even as the Mass was underway, with some pilgrims packing it in before they got a chance to see the pontiff.

Just after 5 p.m., 1,000 priests emerged from the Basilica lined up in twos and headed into the Parkway to distribute communion. Many ran out of hosts.

The first wave of attendees began leaving the Parkway after communion was given out. The Mass ended shortly before 6 p.m.

The next World Meeting of Families will be held in Dublin, Ireland, in 2018, church officials announced to cheers from the crowd.

After the ceremony, Pope Francis exited toward Interstate-76, past the Philadelphia Museum of Art, and made his way to the airport.