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Keep Houston Press Free
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Bring Out Your Dead (Popes)

Hey, kids, the Popemobile is coming to town!!

(Pope not included.)

Houston's very own Museum of Funeral History (Motto: "Slightly More Popular Than Houston's Museum of Printing History") is putting on an elaborate exhibit on how popes get funeralized.

As part of it, the museum announced, an actual Popemobile (used on a visit to Great Britain) will be on display.

As an old altar boy, some of this stuff sounds fascinating; some sound silly.

Exact replicas of papal vestments were reproduced by V. Gammarelli Tailor Shop, the firm that has made all vestments for the last seven popes. Mastercraft Casket Company built an exact full-scale replica of the coffin used in papal funerals. The Swiss Guard, responsible for the pope's personal security and protection of the Vatican, donated two authentic uniforms to enhance the exhibit. The exhibit also includes an authentic, full-scale replica of Pope John Paul II's crypt.

Let's see -- fake clothes, fake coffin, fake crypt. It's like going to Cooperstown and seeing a replica of Babe Ruth's glove.

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But no one can put on a funeral like the Catholics, and they pull out all the stops when it's a pope. So there might finally be a reason to visit the Museum of Funeral History starting November 25.

Museum of Printing History, you're now on the clock.

-- Richard Connelly

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