On a personal (vaguely non-politicial) note, I find the whole idea of viewing bodies lying in state quite creepy. There's something kind of disturbing about this photograph here. Maybe Catholic readers will think differently. If so, I'd be interested in knowing why.
When I was in Russia in the late 1990s, I remember going to see Lenin's body, which could be viewed in his mausoleum in Red Square. His body was this kind of indescribable greenish-gray color, and his features were all exaggerated. He looked more like a wax figure than flesh, which led some people to speculate that he was, in fact, a wax figure. I tend to doubt this, because you could see the place on the side of his head where the sewed his ear back on after it fell off.
In any case, it was a truly gruesome sight, made all the more horrifying by the fact that the body in front of you was somehow responsible for one of the worst tyrannies in human history. It's a difficult feeling to describe.
Not to compare John Paul II to Lenin, mind you. I just find the fetishization of the bodies of important historical figures to be a strange phenomenon.