100 Frequently Asked Questions about the Beatification

Some advice for those planning to attend the beatification of Alvaro del Portillo on September 27 in Madrid.

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About Madrid

1.Is the water in Madrid drinkable?

Yes.

2.How will the weather be?

At the end of September the weather in Madrid is usually warm and sunny.

3.Where can one find Automatic Teller Machines (ATM)?

The volunteers at the information desks will show you where the nearest ATM machines are located. You may also search on the Internet or try to locate the nearest bank.

4.Where is the Embassy of … ?

You will find this information in the beatification booklet that is in the kit of each participant.

5.Will there be organized visits in Madrid?

No. In some places related to the life of Don Alvaro volunteers will explain the history of these sites.

6.Where can I register?

It is not necessary to register to receive these explanations about the historical sites.

Valdebebas

7.Where is Valdebebas?

It is near the airport and near IFEMA, to the north of Madrid. You can get there by Metro, Bus or Commuter Train. Please take a look at the transportation map.

8.Can one go to Valdebebas by public transport?

Yes. The closest metro stations to the venue of the ceremony are: Campo de las Naciones, Mar de Cristal and San Lorenzo. The nearest Commuter Train station: Fuente de la Mora.

9.Where can I buy a ticket?

At the Metro stations and shops one can buy a metro bus pass (10 trip ticket). There are also special season tickets for tourists. Check the price and travel conditions at any metro station.

10. Where can I get a map of the metro?

You can request this at the information window at the metro stations.

11. At what time of the day is the metro open?

The metro stations open at 6 a.m. and close at 1.30 a.m. the following morning.

12. How far is the nearest metro station to Valdebebas.

The Campo de las Naciones station is a 30-minute walk from Valdebebas.

13. Can I go on bicycle or motorcycle?

Yes, there will be an unprotected zone where you can leave your bicycles or motorcycles. For security reasons bicycles will not be allowed into the zone of the ceremonies. Madrid metros allow you to ride with your bicycles during the weekends.

14. Are there public transport buses to get from Madrid to Valdebebas?

Yes. There is a bus line to Valdebebas that goes from Mar de Cristal. Apart from this there will also be shuttle buses that can take you to the zone of the beatification. They will depart from the following stations: Plaza de Castilla (14 minutes by bus to Valdebebas), Mar de Cristal (8 minutes) and Campo de las Naciones. There will also be a shuttle from the Cercanías de Fuente de la Mora station (8 minutes by bus to Valdebebas).

15. At what time will the ceremony area be opened?

The zone will be open at 7 am on the 27th, and at 8 am on the 28th.

16. Can one enter with food or drink?

Yes, but we would like to leave everything very clean. We therefore urge you to use the waste bins.

17. Will there be access control?

There will be access control but admission will be free.

18. If I come with a registered group do I have to enter at the same time as the rest of the group?

No, because each person will have his or her own entry ticket.

19. Do I have to register?

No, it is not necessary to register. However those who register will be assigned to specific places within the area of the ceremony.

20. Where can I register?

On the website www.alvaro14.org. However, if you are part of a group, then before you register you should contact your group leader. Group leaders should be registering the members of their groups and you probably are already registered.

21. Where can I collect my entry ticket?

If you are registered you will need to print your ticket. If you don’t have a ticket you can still enter another zone without a ticket.

22. Is it possible to buy some transport, meal or cultural visit ticket at the same time that I register online for the event?

No.

23. Is it necessary to register minors?

Yes, minors are registered like one more member of the group, which is to say, by filling in their names and surnames on the forms.

24. What documents should I bring along?

None.

25. Where can people with disabilities or serious mobility problems register?

Like everyone else they can register only at www.alvaro14.org. In addition we have provided an email address ayudaalamovilidad@alvarodelportillo.org in order to respond to questions from people who, while not disabled, will need additional information in order to accommodate reduced mobility. On the website we also offer some information on companies from which one can rent wheelchairs.

26. Can I bring a helper along?

Yes, and the accompanying helper should also register.

27. Can one go without an accompanying helper and on arriving request one?

If you are disabled, it will be difficult to arrive there without an accompanying helper. Once you are there, however, there will be volunteers who will happily assist you in whatever you may need.

28. What documentation does one need to have to be accredited?

Disabled participants do not need to present any special documentation, since there is no special place designated for them.

29. Where is the waiting place for the special buses that will take disabled people to the precincts and to their zones?

Shuttle buses from nearby metro stations will be available for everyone who wishes to attend the ceremonies, including the disabled. These shuttle buses will leave from four metro stations: Campo de las Naciones, Mar de cristal, Plaza de Castilla, and the Commuter Train from Fuente de la Mora. Nevertheless, we recommend that disabled participants plan to come with their group and that the group come in a bus which is equipped to handle wheel chairs in the luggage compartment.

30. Can I go to the ceremony with a baby a few months old?

Yes.

31. Are you sure?

Yes.

32. Is there an admission fee to enter?

No, entrance to the ceremonies is free.

33. Where can I make a donation?

At the information points and at the venue of the beatification ceremony.

34. Can I register to join the choir?

No, registration for the choir is now closed.

35. Can I be a volunteer?

No, registration for volunteers is now closed.

36. I am a medical doctor and I would like to offer my services as a volunteer

Registration for volunteers is now closed.

37. I would like to bring some flowers. Who can I give these to?

You can bring them to any of the Churches where there will be adoration of the Blessed Sacrament or you can give them to the volunteers. These churches are listed at www.alvaro14.org.

38. Is there a book where I can write Mass intentions?

No.

39. Are there prayer cards or brochures?

Yes, at the information stands.

40. Where will the photo of the new blessed be placed?

On the altar.

41. Where can journalists apply for accreditation?

On the website www.alvaro14 or at the information point located at 16 Pablo Aranda Street, Madrid.

42. Will there be a special position for photographers?

They will have a special place within the zone of Valdebebas.

43. Where will TV cameras be placed?

There will be a special place in the zone of Valdebebas.

44. Where will the radio transmission sets be located?

There will be a special place in the zone of Valdebebas.

45. Where will accredited journalists be positioned?

There will be a special place in the zone of Valdebebas.

46. Where can I get press documentation?

From the website www.alvaro14.org.

47. Is there a place set aside for interviews?

There will be a special place in the press area.

48. Is there WIFI?

There will be no WIFI at Valdebebas.

Within Valdebebas

49. Is it permitted to record videos or take photos?

Yes, from wherever you are.

50. Where will the singers and choir be located?

The choir and the orchestra will be located on the stage, to the right.

51. Where will the representatives of the diplomatic corps, invitees and other personalities be seated?

They will be in zone A1.

52. I would like to concelebrate. Is it possible?

Priests who wish to concelebrate should contact ceremonias@alvarodelportillo.org

53. Will there be chapels at Valdebebas?

Yes.

54. Where can I celebrate Mass?

Send your questions to comunion@alvarodelportillo.org.

55. Will there be confessionals? Where will they be located?

Confessionals will be placed in different locations. They will be clearly visible and conveniently located.

56. Where can we have a meditation?

This will not be possible in Valdebebas. But it will be possible in some Madrid churches. Please contact actoseniglesias@alvarodelportillo.org.

57. Is there some place set aside to give talks or to rest?

Not in Valdebebas.

58. Can one sleep overnight in Valdebebas?

No.

59. Where can we eat?

There will be a picnic area for eating in Valdebebas but you will have to bring the food along, since it will not be possible to buy anything there. If you eat there, please clean up afterwards.

60. Will there be seats for everyone?

There will be special zones with seats for about 20,000 people.

61. Would it be good to bring along a portable chair or stool to sit on?

Yes since there will be very few seats. It will be very useful to bring along a foldable chair.

62. What documents do I need to bring along to the beatification ceremony?

No special documentation is necessary.

63. How do I know my entry ticket or zone?

If you are registered this will be indicated clearly on your ticket which you should print at home. Otherwise, once you arrive the volunteers will tell you your zone.

64. Is a programme of events available?

It can be found on the website www.alvaro14.org.

65. What happens if I come late? Can I still enter?

Yes.

66. Where can I get the booklet for the ceremony?

You can download it from www.alvarodelportillo.org or through the free mobile App.

67. Will the zones be closed off?

No.

68. Can I enter and leave my zone during the ceremony?

Yes.

69. Will I be able to receive Communion?

Yes.

70. Will there be translation to other languages?

Yes. There will be simultaneous translation to English and participants can listen in via FM radio.  The frequency will be provided at the venue of the ceremony.

71. Will there be a meeting point in case I lose my group?

Yes, these will be clearly indicated on the access maps and you can also ask the volunteers.

72. Where is the place to locate lost objects?

These will be clearly indicated on the access maps and you can also ask the volunteers.

73. Will there be a breastfeeding room or a place to warm baby food?

No.

74. Will there be a nursery?

No.

75. Where will the restrooms be?

They will be located in all zone entrances.

76. If I lose a minor, who can I inform or where can I go?

There is a specific place for this in zone F.

77. Are there places nearby to get drinks or food?

No.

78. Are there souvenir or memorabilia shops?

These shops can be found throughout the city but no souvenirs or memorabilia will be produced for the beatification.

79. Where can I buy guidebooks, books and/or postcards?

In the centre of Madrid.

80. Is there a pharmacy nearby?

Not in Valdebebas.

81. Where is there a medical station or infirmary?

They will be clearly indicated and you can also ask the volunteers.

82. What is the emergency telephone number?

It is 112 throughout Spain.

83. Will there be translation for the deaf?

Yes, there will be a special area for those who registered as “deaf people”.

84. Can anyone go to the event including non-Catholics or non-Christians?

Yes.

85. Will we be able to greet our bishop?

It will be difficult because there will be many bishops in attendance.

86. Someone I know will be concelebrating. Can I go greet him in the sacristy?

No. Access to the sacristy is in an area reserved for concelebrants for which a special accreditation is needed. It would be better to plan to meet with him some place else.

87. Is it necessary to wear some special or ceremonial attire?

No. Please dress appropriately for the occasion.

88. Where is the nearest hospital?

The nearest hospital is the Sanchinarro area.

89. Can we bring banners or flags?

Better not to. It’s a liturgical ceremony and, moreover, it will obstruct the view for others.

90. Can we bring backpacks?

Yes.

91. Do we need to bring water?

Yes, even though there will be an area where water will be distributed.

92. Is there a place to leave suitcases?

No.

93. Can we bring along a parasol (large umbrella)?

No. The ground is made of asphalt and it will therefore be difficult to set this up.

94. What should I do if I see a strange object or a suspicious person?

Notify the security services.

95. At the end of the Mass are we allowed to take away the flowers as souvenirs?

No. They will be needed for the Mass on the 28th.

Returning from Valdebebas

96. How do I reach the train or metro station?

You can walk along Fuerzas Armadas Avenue. Take a look at the map.

97. How do I go back to Madrid?

At the end of the ceremony the shuttle busses will take you back to your departure point.

98. How can I get to the airport?

Although the airport is very close to Valdebebas, you cannot go there on foot. Go to the Campo de las Naciones metro stop, which has a direct connection to the Barajas-Adolfo Suárez airport.

99. Where will the groups’ busses be located?

There will be a special parking lot in Valdebebas.

100. And if I have a question not covered in this FAQ?

Please contact the event organizers through the website www.alvaro14.org.