Monday, October 11, 2010

Perfect start to the day

It's just gone 7am here in Rome and I've been serenaded by bells chiming Ave Maria. How marvelous! Wish the weather was as delightful - overcast skies, not unlike Canberra right now I'm told.

Touch Down - ROME!!!

We have arrived in Rome after our 26 hour journey. It is wonderful to be here.
Charlotte King from Forbes and Heidi Welsh
from Eugowra with our guide Stephania
Stephania, our tour guide and Salvatora our bus driver greeted us at the airport and took us on an orientation tour of the streets of Rome. What an amazing city. We stopped at the Colosseum and the Circus Maximus; this is the site
Miranda Evans and me
where most of the Christians were martyred. Stephania also taught us a very important skill – how to drink from the water fountains of Rome. Bishop Mark also pointed out many of the Mother houses of the religious orders and the university (Propaganda Fide), where many of our Australia Bishops studied.

Thanks for the demo Charlotte

We celebrated the Eucharist at the church of Our Lady of Guadeloupe near our hotel. The gospel of the Beatitudes was proclaimed. Archbishop Mark told us that in the Roman Missal, all the saints are called – not ‘saint’  but ‘blessed’ – beati – because we see in them what the beatitudes really look like. Mary MacKillop lived the beatitudes in her life, as did St Vincent de Paul and our other wonderful saints.

Dinner was shared in a quaint little restaurant in the cobbled streets near the Vatican. We then walked through the Piazza of Saint Peter’s Basilica – the warmth of the Piazza came not only from the beautiful warm October weather but also from other pilgrims who seemed as awe struck as we were as we gazed upon the stunning spot-lit architecture.
Channel Seven found us at the hotel, interviewed Archbishop Mark, filmed us all dining at the restaurant and interviewed Fr Richard Thompson for the live AM program. Looks like we are going to be TV stars!!