Thursday, April 26, 2012

Vatican Museum!!!

The Vatican Museum is so full of gorgeous art and incredible artifacts that it's difficult to even take it all in.  I took pictures of some of my favorite pieces and they are below....

Ancient Christian cool is that?

This is the oldest liturgical bell in existence

St. Helen's sarcophagus...

 OK. These are not statues but they are some of my favorite people....:-)

There is so much beauty in Rome I think you could spend years just absorbing it.  Maybe years just to see it all....So much glory to God..

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

The Coliseum

I don't know what Blogger has done.  I do not like this new setup.  I've posted two photos of the Coliseum, planning to post text around it as I usually do and the photos seem to be stuck together.

All right, let's start here.  Above is a photo of the cross inside the Coliseum, placed there to honor the thousands of Christians martyred there.  Brother Mark told us that the deaths of the Christians were not the primary attraction at the Coliseum.  They were more of a sideshow.  The gladiator dramas were the big attraction.  The Christians were more apt to silently pray or sing hymns before their deaths.  Not as exciting to the bloodthirsty spectators, I guess

The Holy Father led the Stations of the Cross at the Coliseum on Good Friday.  I don't know if you can see it bet there is a cross made of votive candles to the right of the canopy.  It was very moving.

The Coliseum was built in AD 80 and it held 50,000 spectators.  There were 8 entrances and tickets were pieces of broken pottery with seats, rows, and sections marked.  The entire place could empty in about 15 minutes.  There were many shows a day and they were free.

Underground passageways, now exposed because the floor is no longer there, held prisoners, wild animals, and props.  The animals were from all over the world and the gladiator would not know what he would face until the animal arrived through trap doors and elevators right onto the floor.  I had to wonder how people would enjoy that.  I believe it was the Christian Emperor Constantine (son of St. Helen) who put an end to these shows.

From left to right-- Liz, Mike, me, Mary!, Anne, and Zach.  Mike Sr. took the picture.

All stadiums today are designed in the same manner as the Coliseum.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

More on Rome...

I think I have not been writing that much about Rome because we were so busy while there and since we've been back I am still basking in the joy of having been there and still overwhelmed by the memory of all we saw. So instead of a coherent and logical description of what we did when I am just going to post a little here and there....

OK. This is the Holy Father at the Chrism Mass at St. Peter's Basilica on Holy Thursday. There was a very kind Sister of Charity sitting next to me and closer to the aisle who urged me to come closer and helped me to get a good view. She asked for my prayers and I said I would pray for her, but now I can't remember her name which was a little unusual. Please pray for the gentle, sweet sister who helped me to get this photo of the Holy Father.

Saint Peter's Basilica. We were given a fantastic tour of St. Peter's Basilica by Brother Mark Thelen, a friend of my son's and the son of a friend of mine. It was so Christ centered, so spiritual, so focused on the church. Mark is a seminarian studying to be a priest of the Legionaries of Christ. Could I ask for prayers for him as well? Such an impressive young man. Just the kind of man we need in the priesthood.

The 95 foot tall bronze baldachino designed by Bernini. And the dome towers over the baldachino. Are you getting a sense of the size? It's monumental!

The Pieta....this is where I prayed for the special intentions of a blogging friend of mine. It is such an awe-inspiring sculpture. Brother Mark explained that this was Michelangelo's first work. His FIRST WORK!!! He was only 25 when he finished it. It is the only work that Michelangelo signed. And look at how the legs of Jesus are not really limp against Mary. It is almost as though they are floating a little above, almost a prefigurement of the impending Resurrection.
Here is Brother Mark with Mike and me, Mary and Liz, and Mike.

The Trevi Fountain at night. This very beautiful fountain is still powered by the aquaducts!!

Mary and Liz throwing a coin in the Trevi Fountain which legend says ensures you a trip back to Rome!!! Hope it's true!!
My sister...also hoping for a return trip to Rome!!!
More on Rome soon.....

Wednesday, April 04, 2012

More from Roma!

St. Peter's Square at night. I understand the Pope's residence is the top floor of the building in the background--- the last four windows from the right. Maybe he's up writing another book?

St. Peter's Basilica at night...

Papal Audience....Mary got this picture...

University of Dallas-- Rome Campus...

And back to St. Peter's Basilica....

Monday, April 02, 2012

Roma Photos!

I have tried to post a few times and either I'm too tired or the computer is messing up...or the internet.

Below is a sculpture from I think Sant'Augustino Church of the Baby Virgin Mary. So sweet.

The Trevi Fountain....

Just had to get a shot of this cool image of St. Rita of Cascia, my oldest daughter's Confirmation saint.
More Trevi Fountain...
Saint Peter's.....
So much to write about, so little time. I have always heard that the churches in Rome are beautiful, but I never really got it until now. The churches here are BEAUTIFUL!!!! I mean breathtakingly beautiful. Too overwhelmingly beautiful to even really capture on film.

It brings you to tears to be in such places.

All glory to God!