TODAY   |  March 18, 2013

Preparations under way for pope’s inauguration

As the new Pope Francis has been greeting tens of thousands in St. Peter’s Square this weekend, worldwide leaders, including Vice President Joe Biden, are arriving for his inauguration on Tuesday. NBC’s Keir Simmons reports.

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>>> leaders including vice president joe biden are gathering in rome this morning ahead of the installation of pope francis . let's get to the vatican .

>> reporter: even if it is raining like this tomorrow this area will still be packed as you say world leaders are flying in. the pope meeting with the argentinian president . the chairs are up, the barriers are up and the pope's message remember the poor and his style. as pope francis prepares for his installation mass vice president biden arrived in rome sunday. but it's ordinary men and women who are connecting with the pope in an extraordinary way. francis walking over to a crowd of a few hundred people just to say hello, leaving his security scrambling. then sunday he greeted tens of thousands with st. peter's square, making the mass. in the crowd we met philadelphia's cardinal.

>> this is unique. this is a wonderful opportunity. it's the first time a new pope francis appears and first time he gives his blessing here.

>> reporter: preparations are under way. we got the set up with the big screens here and expecting a lot of people.

>> about a million people are expected on tuesday for the mass and inauguration.

>> reporter: father thomas embraced by pope francis on saturday works at the vatican .

>> he's taken the world by storm. he's taken us by surprise and storm. many of us find ourselves between two emotions of laughter and tears.

>> reporter: and ready to meet his new style means a new direction for the church.

>> don't think we know all about what this pope is going to do. clearly, you know, the cardinals want him to reform the vatican curia and i think he's going to start doing that just symbolically.

>> reporter: they will keep their roles temporarily but many are worried. at the end the pope told them go have lunch. what a great way to win fans.

>> great mace to do it.