By Carlos X. (reporting from San Salvador):
I posted earlier in Spanish that Fr. Luis Ernesto Ayala, a diocesan spokesman, told me that the San Salvador police estimated the crowd attending Blessed Oscar Romero’s beatification at over half a million. That information was just confirmed to the press at the beatification site by Msgr. Rafael Urrutia, the vice-postulator of the cause. (In a note over at Crux, John Allen called today’s beatification the largest religious gathering in Central American history.) Msgr. Urrutia told me that having done the Romero beatification in a big way here in El Salvador does not reduce his desire to see Pope Francis come to the country to canonize Romero one day. In fact, Msgr. Urrutia said, he could make it a two-fer and beatify Fr. Rutilio Grande during the same trip. Msgr. Urrutia says he has been getting signals from the Holy Father to get on with it (Urrutia is also the diocesan postulator for the Rutilio Grande cause).