Today was a bit of a lazy day. I only made about 7000 steps according to Fitbit instead of the usual 10,000. Breakfast with an Archbishop (no pictures) but a marvelous invigorating conversation. Then I went to wandering about St. Peter's Square because I had discovered that there is a marker which marks the spot where John Paul II was shot on the feast of Our Lady of Fatima in 1981. Pranzo was with Valeria Lamarra, then a visit to St. John Lateran. I will have to go back to Lateran as I was not able to see much of it as a Confirmation was happening. Cena was with Fr. David Spencer, a Mercedarian Scholar studying in Rome. That conversation was delightful but took us mostly near midnight.
The day began peacefully and quietly with Matins and Lauds and Prime. Then friends from St. Mary in Norwalk, CT joined me for Pentecost Friday Mass. Frank Devito and his lovely bride Molly are on their honeymoon. Then we went out for a light breakfast and saw a framed papal graffiti on the wall in the Ristorante. Then I had reservations for the Scavi after which I visited the interior of St. Peter. Praying at the Tombs of Pius XII, John XXIII. Paul VI, and John Paul I and II, was able to give thanks for all the blessings that came to us during those years.
This was a St. Paul day. I visited two sites associated with St. Paul and then had lunch with a Daughter of St. Paul. One of the feature of the Indulgence associated with the four major basilicas is the sacrament of Confession. There are confessors available at all of the basilicas. You just have to look for a sign that says English. The two sites were St. Paul Outside the Walls where Paul is buried and Tre Fontane where Paul was martyred. There is a chapel over where he was in prison, and there is the pillar that was used in his beheading. Then I had lunch with Sr, Margaret FSP, and then a glass of wine capped off the evening with Mountain Butoruc
Wednesday in Rome was restful and beautiful. After Morning Mass I headed down to St. Peters's Square. If I could find a hat,a bottle of water and maybe an umbrella, then I would attend the audience. I had great seats. Even so I roasted but got no sunburn. Afterwards went back to the Domus and changed clothes and headed up to The North American College. There I was to meet up with friends Shane Hewson from the Diocese of Tulsa and Thomas Stuart from the Diocese of Santa Rosa. It was a great Pranzo and it was wonderful to be familiar surroundings from my sabbatical in 2015. After Pranzo I hooked up again with Fr. James Sullivan OP and headed up to the Casa O'Toole to say hello to the ICTE secretary Carol. There I was able to snap some picture of the view from the kitchen and the view from my bedroom for three months. Ended the day with a glass of wine and excellent conversation with Mountain Butorac, and American Tour guide living in Rome. I stole his rosary which was in three pieces and took it back to my room where I put it back together with my little tool.
Today was a time of prayer at Santa Maria Maggiore, Rosary, and Confession and preparation for the pilgrims indulgence for the Pilgrims to Rome. The beautiful Statue of Regina Pacis where I said a prayer for our Marian Sisters, Prayer in front of the tomb of the Dominican Pope, St. Pius V, and prayer in front of a 13th century crucifix, and prayer in front of the relic of the Manger. If you want to really enjoy these basilicas you must go early in the morning when there are few people. A lovely walk through ancient Rome followed, took my Faschia back to Gammarelli to have it shortened by three inches because I lost 25lbs, had a marvelous pranzo with Fr. James Sullivan of ICTE, and then prayed for my former confreres at Santa Maria in Trivio at the tomb of St. Gaspar del Bufalo. During the walk ran into a few friends. Rome is such a marvelous city.
Day two started quietly: early morning Mass in the EF for Pentecost Monday. After breakfast headed to one of my favorite places: Gammarelli. I had been in email contact about a Marian vestment. So Stefano had some great suggestions. It was very easy to come to a decision considering the price. It will be a classic Roman style in White, with Blue and silver accents. I ordered the Chasuble, stole, maniple, burse and chalice veil as well as a pall. Hopefully it will be here in time for August 15. Then I went in search of a sim card. Paying for Data on a Verizon plan was too expensive. I had already paid $75 for 300 mb on that plan. Now on TIM i will pay 30 euro for 10 gb. That should last me two weeks, The rest of the day was spent in some of my favorite churches. San Andrea de Valle has the tombs of Pope Pius II and III. Day was concluded with a marvelous Pranzo.
Well, I landed, got a bit of rest and then headed off for dinner with Joan Lewis from EWTN. As always with Joan, the conversation was the best part of the dinner. I discovered on my camera picture I had forgotten from the preparation for the Easter Vigil, two proud young women happy with the successful polishing job on the thurible. Visited a couple of beautiful Churches, St. Agnes, and the German national church. This morning I celebrated a quiet, prayerful low Mass in the Extraordinary Form. I have the opportunity to celebrate the whole octave of Pentecost in absolutely beautiful silence. I am always amazed how St. Peter's falls silent when Mass starts. I was on the periphery of the Square when the 50th anniversary of the Charismatic Movement started. The beginning was beautiful but very un-charismatic with the beautiful Gregorian Chant. Perhaps if the Charismatic masses back home had been such I would not have gotten in so much trouble. Pranzo was a delight, Insalata di Mare and Linguini al Salmone, two of my favorite dishes at La Victoria. So far the the vacation has been restful and delicious.
Omnia Christus Est Nobis
Christ is everything for us!
I am a Roman Catholic Priest from California. I spent 13 wonderful years years as a member of the Province of the Pacific in the Missionaries of the Precious Blood. The outline of my life can be traced here.