Australian sailors returning from the British Queen's Jubilee celebrations in England, had an unexpected treat when they arrived in Italy.
GV Australian navy and others in forecourt of Pope's residence (2 shots)
GV Pope leads prayers and Pope blesses audience and Australian navy plays tune (2 shots)
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Background: Australian sailors returning from the British Queen's Jubilee celebrations in England, had an unexpected treat when they arrived in Italy. While they were there they were given a special audience with Pope Paul.
SYNOPSIS: Amongst the sailors were members of the official band from the Australian flagship, the aircraft carrier, HMAS Melbourne.
The band played in front of a huge crowd which jammed the courtyard in front of the Pope's summer residence at Castelgawddlfo. People had been waiting in the square for days awaiting the Papal Benediction. The Pope singled out the Australians and said he had the greatest pleasure in welcoming the young sailors. Both Roman Catholic and Anglican chaplains attended the ceremony. The Pope said that the presence of the Australians at the ceremony made Australia appear very close to what he termed, "the hearts of us all". After the Benediction, the Australian band played a special song composed for the occasion by one of its members.