Saturday, October 25

The Exhibit that Brought Me Back

When I was in high school, 16 years old, my parents did something crazy.  They let me go to Rome.  With a wild group of girlfriends.  Practically alone.

Okay not practically alone, but looking back I do think they were sort of crazy to let me go like that.  I was escorted by a consecrated lay member of Regnum Christi, and I was with a group of girlfriends- yes, we were wild!  What seemed like a non-stop whirlwind behind-the-scenes adventure lasted only a few nights, but at 16 years old I was pretty sure I could do it all!

I remember the boxed lunches, sleeping on the floor of a school room, feeling like the bus driver could have cared a little more for his driving skills, singing and chanting JOHN PAUL TWO, WE LOVE YOU and squeezing our way into St. Peter's Square to wind up being only inches away from him as he drove by in his pope mobile!  Pentecost '98, mass and confirmations at St. Paul Outside the Walls, the Trevi Fountain, gelato, so many basilicas, wearing skirts the entire trip, and the COLD showers!  Talking to the Swiss guards, the bright green grass at a seminary we visited, relics and incorruptible bodies, and the Pieta at St. Peter's.

I remember popping into a convenient store for some Tylenol and just thinking- so this is what it would be like to live in Rome.

That was 16 years ago but I remember the sights and feelings and the emotions like it was yesterday.

I'm so happy my parents put me on that plane.  So grateful they trusted an amazing woman, a woman who changed my life, to take care of me for a few days, halfway across the world.

Pope Saint John Paul II will always have a special place in my heart!  John Paul the Great, Pray for Us!

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