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Different experiences await those traveling for pope

Sun Bowl, Ciudad Juarez offering events

EL PASO, Texas – Two very different experiences await those who have traveled to the U.S.-Mexico border for Pope Francis' visit.

The masses of people who have been waiting for Wednesday had to choose whether to go to Ciudad Juarez for the papal Mass or to go to the University of Texas at El Paso Sun Bowl for Two Nations, One Faith.

More than 200,000 people are expected to be at the former Juarez fairgrounds for the Mass in a field near Benito Juarez stadium. An altar was built specifically for Pope Francis for the historic event.

Just miles away, tens of thousands of people will be at the Sun Bowl viewing party that will offer a two-way simulcast with the pope.

"I can see him up close in the Sun Bowl plus there's going to be entertainment," Cecelia Gannon from Dallas said.

"Why Juarez," Doug Breckenridge asked. "I'll get a different experience and it'll be an experience I'm sure I'll cherish for the rest of my life."

On Tuesday, St. Pius X Catholic Church in El Paso hosted one of the largest gatherings in anticipation of the visit. People from the Archdiocese of San Antonio were in attendance as well as others from Boston, Los Angeles and other distant locations.

Some people told KSAT-12 they've been waiting months for the papal visit. Others said they've been waiting their entire lives.

The Holy Father will land at the Juarez airport at about 10 a.m. MST. The papal mass time has been pushed back to 4:30 p.m. For those watching in San Antonio, that's 5:30 p.m.