Audio Available!

Audio Available!
Be sure to check out in each blog post the links to the audio recordings of my homilies. They are at the beginning of each post! Also, look to the right for links to Audio from other good resources!

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

The Ecstasy, The Agony, and the Ecstasy

...again and again and again.  This trip had its share of highs and lows.
After getting three bikes stolen in Lucca, we were able to bike safely to Rome over the next 4 days.

Then immediately after arriving in Rome, our luggage was stolen.  Every single bag or backpack was taken out of our van, parked up against the Vatican wall for a couple hours while we were with His Holiness Pope Francis in St. Peter's square.
It was such a dramatic shift from the absolute high of finishing a crazy-hard pilgrimage (for those guys who started in Canterbury) to the absolute dumps of having almost no clothes, canceling credit cards, and panicking over lost passports.
We clearly had to make dramatic adjustments to our plans.  We spent the first six hours getting clothes, toiletries, and any other absolute necessities (iPhone chargers!), washing up, and making credit / insurance calls.  We looked (and smelled) ridiculous for those 8 hours!

Finally we went to dinner (no one had really eaten since breakfast) and planned for an early start at our scheduled Mass in a grotto chapel at St. Peter's (down near Peter's tomb).  It was quite an emotional experience, as the readings spoke about injustice!
We immediately went to the US Consulate to do everything we could to get new passports. After 4 1/2 hours and a quick lunch, we went back and got new passports just in time to still make our scheduled tour at the Vatican museums.

We had a wonderful tour guide named Liz who was funny, efficient, and devout.  Her insights were great, focusing on the popes who promoted the arts, and of course, Michelangelo. (The convent we stayed at, by the way, was next to the entrance to the Vatican museums).


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