US Secret Service Director Joe Clancy was in his hometown Saturday just outside the Basilica where Pope Francis would begin his Philadelphia trip with a Mass.
Clancy who took over the embattled agency earlier this year is a Philadelphia-area native.
The Secret Service is ultimately responsible for all of the Papal Events as this is a National Special Security Event or NSSE. The World Meeting of Families weekend marks the 51st NSSE since 1998.
Clancy, a graduate of Archbishop Carroll High School in Radnor, Pennsylvania, says he's been intimately involved in the papal security detail. He says he's built on a relationship that started when Pope Benedict visited the U.S.
He told NBC News' Stephanie Gosk in an exclusive national interview, "I personally know the head of security for the Vatican and have met with him several times. In fact, I went over to Rome to see how they operate with Pope Francis. I've been involved in other Pope's visits, but Pope Francis of course is a little different. And we wanted to see how his detail works.”
Clancy was seen speaking with Philadelphia Police Commissioner Charles Ramsay and other top Philly police officials ahead of the pontiff's arrival.