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As Pope Benedict Leaves the Vatican, WPIX Provides Live Coverage

All the channels broke in this morning for extended coverage of Pope Benedict’s farewell. However, the stations were all taking network special reports. Not so at WPIX/Channel 11.

WPIX, which could have provided the “counterprogramming” by keeping Jerry Springer on the air, made a good choice. Channel 11, recognizing the historic nature of the pope’s resignation (first time is almost 600 years), had its own coverage.

Morning anchors Sukanya Krishnan and Frances Rivera led the special programming. They were joined on the couch by reporters Mary Murphy and Dan Mannarino, both of whom are headed to Rome for the Conclave of Cardinals next week to select the next pope.

Krishnan did make a faux pas as they came on the air just before 11 a.m. She said the pope was set to leave the Vatican at 5 p.m. Italian time and “11 p.m. our time.”  Seconds later, the graphic on the screen made the correction.

Rivera also had hands in the blooper jar by saying, “Certainly, a monumentous day here. Historical day, unprecendented.”

Adding insight to the proceedings was Monsignor Kieran Harrington of the Diocese of Brooklyn.

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