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Sound and Vision

Well, our pilgrims are emerging from their jet-lag and their “while you were out” messages, and they’re beginning to post mementos of our trip to Rome and Assisi. Susie from Omaha posted almost a thousand photos — everything from Rome’s streetcorner Marian shrines to Assisi’s, um, interesting plumbing.

If there were an audio track, you’d recognize the mellifluous voice of Kris McGregor of KVSS Radio. Kris joined us for the pilgrimage, and she managed our live and taped broadcasts from the streets, sites, and truck stops of Italy. KVSS has now posted much of that audio. So you can listen as I struggle to be heard over the roar of Roman crowds and the horns of Roman traffic. Scott and Kimberly Hahn were far more successful — as indeed Kris was — but these people are professionals. (Junior says he’ll post video of some of their presentations as soon as he finds the right cable.)
I’m still giddy from the experience. We remembered Clement and Ignatius along the streets they walked themselves. We venerated their relics. We prayed at the tombs of Peter and Paul, Simon and Jude, Philip and James, Francis and Clare. In those days between Ascension and Pentecost, we made an earnest novena to the Holy Spirit. We joined daily for the Holy Eucharist. Our chaplain (joined by four clergy pilgrims) was Father Pablo Gadenz of Trenton, New Jersey, a brilliant young Scripture scholar, and he preached up a storm.

There were some funny moments, like when a bystander berated Scott Hahn for “proselytizing” in his mini-lecture at the Arch of Titus — a lecture addressed, in English, only to our little flock. But the defining moment (for me) came when a Spanish Salesian Brother took one of our pilgrims aside in the Catacombs of Saint Callixtus and observed: “This group is very special. You all have Jesus in your heart.”

2 thoughts on “Sound and Vision

  1. Mike,
    Thank you so much for posting the link to the photos. I was delighted to find your post and yes, I have a somewhat strange fascination with “indigenous plumbing.” I really liked my room in Assisi best. I think it was the peace of St. Francis that still graces that lovely area that captivated my heart and made me fall in love with ancient town, where my “Confirmation Saint” St. Chiara’s body still lays. She was the first saint I began to pray to when we came back to the CC after 26 years in the fray of Evangelicalism.

    My boss is going to make a dvd for us of the two disks full of 990+ pics and add music to the show, so it looks like I’ll be busy the next few days going through Gregorian Chants and Italian music and finding songs to fit the images.

    I talked to Fr. Gerard today and told him about your blog, so he’ll be checking it out soon. Meeting him was a phenomenal experience with a mutual friend we have in common. I’ll have to tell you about that sometime. It’s mind-boggling to say the least!

    I’m still processing things and continue being amazed at all that truly took place on our pilgrimage, inside and outside of ‘me.’ I know one thing, I’ll NEVER go anywhere as a “tourist” again! No comparison can be made. Tourists simply go see places of history or interest to see them and to say “I was there.” A pilgrim, (w/ swollen ankles and pain in her feet and legs that was offered up daily for my prayer intentions) sees it all through a completely different lens… through sacramental eyes, and then is drawn into the story by a Eucharistic bond that goes beyond all things, all time and all space. Being where our big brothers and sisters in the faith walked, lived and died was soul-stirring and so very powerful! The cloud of witnesses was “thick” all around us. I can’t imagine traveling now for the sake of traveling. It wasn’t even so much the awesome amount of information/education and history lessons we shared each day, but the PRESENCE of CHRIST and Our Lady “in the moment” who were guiding us and leading us to deeper knowledge of themselves, showing and speaking the word, “trust” that was (and is) what is still coursing through my veins to this day, and coming out in my discourse with others now, as I relive each day in photos. Retelling it all seems to bring about a real and profound love of Truth, and deep affection for Our Mother and Her precious SON, Jesus, the Way the Truth and the Life…offered for us all each day at Mass. My advice to anyone? GO2MASS
    That’s the license plate found on the car of our dear Father Wee, at St. Robert Bellarmine. Isn’t that the best?

    susiefromomaha : )

  2. Thanks for putting up the pictures and links, Mike. It’s a real pleasure to see.

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