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!

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Pope Francis and the Vatican!

Yesterday we got up early to go to Saint Peter's Square for the weekly Wednesday audience that the Pope gives whenever he is in town. I've been to three audiences, but this will be the first time I meet Pope Francis, and the first time it will be held outside, since the others are in the winter.  First he circled the crowd to say hello to everyone. We were quite close as you can see.
Pope Francis actually came back to this same spot a second time to hold a child (below) that he clearly missed because the driver didn't stop. So we lucked out by the miscommunication!
Then we prayed a Hail Mary and listened to a short reading from Acts of the Apostles before "Papa Francesco" spoke to us (in Italian) about the importance of the family being together for quality time, especially around the dinner table. He even acted out how we often get sucked into technology and don't really look at each other and truly share our day.
Then a summary of the lecture was given in about 7 other languages, and we finished by singing the Our Father in Latin and received the Apostolic Blessing, which included all our family back home! :)
We had a couple hours afterward to "roam" around Rome (*wink*) and get lunch / shop before the Vatican Museums tour.  These museums are absolutely stunning in both their unbelievable quality and incomprehensible vastness.  Nothing can prepare you for the Sistine Chapel or Saint Peter's Basilica. You just have to go there and see it for yourself.  Proportion is executed so perfectly, everything fits together so nicely, that it is almost impossible for pictures to show the size of this church. 
There are over 100 popes buried here.
And of course th phenomenal sculpture of Michaelangelo, the Pietà, which he executed at merely 24 years of age, from a single block of marble!!!
Needless to say, the day was packed to the brim! We almost couldn't take anymore of the awesome beauty, but we did. Later we went to the Pantheon and church of Saint Louis ("Luigi"!) king of France to see three breathtaking paintings by Caravaggio. 
The one on the left, the calling of Matthew, is the most famous.  Ask me about it sometime. :)
Then we had dinner with the seminarians of our diocese who are studying in Rome. We finished with a view of St. Peter's at night and slept exhausted!!

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