WRITTEN BY: DALTON BALTHASER
Philadelphia, PA- The World Meeting of Families is taking place this weekend and Temple University as well as its students are beginning to prepare for Pope Francis’ arrival in Philadelphia.
President Neil Theobald issued a statement through email on Tuesday that said the University would not open until 1:00 p.m. on Monday September 28th.
With nearly one million people coming to Philadelphia for this historic event, many students are choosing to get out of the city for the weekend to avoid the masses.
Junior creative writing major Nick McMenamin is a Resident Assistant in 1300 on the 5th floor.
McMenamin says that his plans for the upcoming papal visit are simple.
“I’m probably not going to do that much,” McMenamin said. “The city is going to be congested and I think [Temple University] is on the edge of the [traffic] zones. I might see if I can make my way down to see what is happening. On Sunday, I am making sure that I am staying out of the traffic zone … I am going to spend my weekend working on my school assignments.”
Many students will find it difficult to travel during this Papal visit because the Ben Franklin Bridge will be closed until 12:00 p.m. Monday and Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA) will run its regional rail on a different schedule than normal.
“Most people are probably going home,” McMenamin said. “I think that most people are just trying to get out of the city. I was debating on whether to go home, but I don’t think it is going to be as easy to get back into the city as people think.”
McMenamin said that the University’s Residence Hall Association is going to put on events for people who are stuck at Temple with not much to do. They will be having a game night on Thursday as well as a movie night on Saturday to give residents something to do during this hectic weekend.
Theobald is planning a lot of different events this weekend including softball games this Saturday between 12 and 4 p.m. at Geasey Field as well as the barbeque he will be hosting this Saturday at 4 p.m. in Founder’s Garden. Theobald as well as his wife will move to main campus Thursday to help assist the Temple community during Francis’ visit.