Up to 50,000 people are predicted to gather at Knock in Ireland today for an apparition by the Virgin Mary.

Dubliner Joe Coleman, the man who predicted the apparition said Our Lady would be visible to those "with an open heart."

Coleman, who says he is “a visionary of our Blessed Mother” said the Virgin Mary had asked him to recite the Rosary with a priest in the Basilica in Knock.

However, he says the Church has so far refused to make a priest available and only agreed to open the doors of the church after pleas from the public.

About 5,000 people gathered at the holy shrine earlier this month but Saturday's numbers are expected to be far higher as people are traveling from across the country and from England, Scotland and Wales.

“The church has been mocking me for the past week, it does not understand how Our Lady can come to a man from Ballyfermot,” he said. “They won’t laugh at me tomorrow.”