The body of the popular Italian saint, Padre Pio, has gone on display in a glass coffin in southern Italy.
Padre Pio was said to have had stigmata, or bleeding wounds of Jesus, on his hands and feet.
His body was exhumed in March on the 40th anniversary of his death. He was canonised by Pope John Paul II in 2002.
More than a million people are expected this year to see his body, which is said to be well-preserved. But there is reportedly no sign of the stigmata.
The Vatican's "minister" of saints, Cardinal Jose Saraiva Martins, led a special open air mass to mark the beginning of the nine-month period during which pilgrims will be able to view the body of Padre Pio.
Already, more than 700,000 people have registered to view his body, and more are expected to make the pilgrimage to the Capuchin friary in San Giovanni Rotondo where it is displayed.
Padre Pio had a large following both before and after his death as a result of the stigmata he was reputed to have.
Some of his believers also say he could foretell the future, as well as know people's sins before they had confessed.
Some viewed him as a fraud, however, and for many years the Vatican itself was sceptical and banned him from celebrating Mass in public.
One Italian historian wrote last year that he may have used carbolic acid to produce his wounds.
Despite this, his popularity grew in Italy and abroad and Padre Pio became something of a cult figure.
Before his death, the Roman Catholic Church said it was convinced the monk's claims were not false.
The monks who exhumed his body in March said it was in "surprisingly good condition," despite no special measures having been taken to preserve it when he was buried in 1968.
"We could clearly make out the beard. The top part of the skull is partly skeletal but the chin is perfect and the rest of the body is well preserved. The knees, hands and nails all clearly visible," said Archbishop Domenico D'Ambrosio, who led the service to exhume the body.
Since then it has been treated by a mortician to make the face more recognisable.