Pope's Coffin Will Be Exhumed for Beatification Faithful will be able to pray before it at John Paul's May ceremony By Nick McMaster, Newser Staff Posted Feb 18, 2011 6:14 PM CST 99 comments Comments In in this Feb. 17, 2004 file photo, Pope John Paul II breaks into a long laugh at the Vatican. (AP Photo/Massimo Sambucetti, File) (Newser) – The coffin of John Paul II will be exhumed for his beatification ceremony in May, reports Reuters. It will remain closed, but the faithful will be able to pray before it at the Vatican. About a million people are expected at the ceremony—which will bring John Paul one step closer to sainthood—and the Vatican is warning its flock in the meantime to watch out for online scam artists selling tickets. The event is free, and none are needed. John Paul was fast-tracked for beatification last month.