Friday, August 19, 2011

Papa has arrived!!

Our troops converged on one of the street corners by which it was said Pope Benedict would pass. We were treated to some fabulous music via audio system that was working very well this time. There was a lot of moving and shakin' going on. These kids are on fire!

Unfortunately, our "Papa," as the Europeans call him, was taken on a route we were not near. So we watched the pope on big screen as he was driven in the "pope mobile" to the first plaza where he emerged to receive the keys to the city. He then was driven to another site where several youth from various countries presented him with gifts. 

The pope offered a celebration of the Word with a blessing for the youth of the world, and the crowds went wild! The streets were packed with pilgrims — everywhere you looked, even in the trees. It still amazes me that so many people have come to one place to see one man ... the successor to Peter — as they draw closer to Christ. 

Many of our 120 pigrims were able to see the pope drive by, and have photos and videos. Unfortunately Spain (or at least this hotel) doesn't have stable internet and I have been unable to download those for you. So sorry. I hope to be online in Paris on Sunday night and post.

By the way, I just want to say that our priests have been absolutely wonderful with these teens and young adults. They've traveled to various events with the different groups and it's been a pleasure to see the lively connection they share with our children.

It's been an exciting day and there's still more to come. Please continue to pray for our youth as they rev up for the finale of this spirit-filled excursion. Tomorrow we experience the Stations of the Cross Spanish style.

More later.

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