It is nice to get together with folk from back home, especially if they are in Rome for the first time. I had the pleasure of meeting with a group from my home parish of St. Agnes in St. Paul (MN). This was a pilgrimage group of highschool students who are considering a vocation to the priesthood.
Before their departure, they had met with the Archbishop, who gave them his blessing. They came with the pastor of the parish, who organized the whole trip, and some parents as chaperons and group leaders. In addition to time in Rome the went to Assisi and down to San Giovanni Rotondo to visit the tomb of Padre Pio. They were able to be very close to the Holy Father during the Wednesday audience as well.
It was a great group of fellows, to be sure. The photo below shows them with their pastor and a couple of seminarians from St. Agnes parish who are studying in Rome and living at the North American College. Yes, seminarians from St. Agnes. That parish continues to provide several vocations a year.
Sometimes we can get a little down when looking at certain sectors of the Church’s life. This, however, was very encouraging.
Here is the group ready to invade the ice-cream shop after devouring large quantities of pizza and plates of spaghetti.