Pope Francis' Visit a Big Security Test for Brazil - NECN

Pope Francis' Visit a Big Security Test for Brazil



    There's more than 1 million young people in the country for World Youth Day (Published Thursday, Feb. 20, 2014)

    (NECN/NBC News: Anne Thompson) - On Caopacabana Beach in Brazil's Rio de Janeiro, it's a Catholic Woodstock - and Pope Francis got a rock star reception.

    With a million young people here for World Youth Day, one young woman was so overcome she could barely get the words out until the pope came to the rescue.

    Unlike Monday's mayhem, Francis' ride in Rio was joyous and safe.

    Security is now everywhere you look, with warships off the coast, soldiers among the tourists along the beach, sharpshooters on the roof overlooking the pope's speech on a soccer field.

    Pope Francis' visit is a big test for Rio, which will host soccer's World Cup next year and the 2016 Summer Olympics.

    Security for both events will run from a brand new $48 million command center.

    Edival Novaes has assembled the latest technology, including more than 1,000 traffic and security cameras positioned across the metro area.

    Pope Francis shows no indication he's worried about security, confidently walking through one of Rio's most dangerous slums, right at home amongst the poorest of the poor.

    An advocate for social justice, the pope called the wealthy of Brazil to do more for the many who have so little.

    On Friday, Pope Francis continues that theme, meeting as he did in Rome with young criminal offenders.