I can't even begin to put in words what this visit by the Holy Father meant to our family. He couldn't have come at a better time for our Church, and for our family. I truly, honestly, and whole-heartedly believe that the timing of his visit, and the timing of everything that is going on with our family is connected.
On Wednesday, the 3 of us headed to my alma mater, CUA, to see The Holy Father arrive. It was so amazing to be on campus, to see all the media, and to just be part of the energy. It was a long day for Christian, but we caught several glimpses of His Holiness and it was so special. I couldn't help but wish I was a current student so I could experience having the direct descendant of St. Peter on campus. In typical CUA fashion, the students reportedly were combining perpetual eucharistic adoration with an event they called "Pope-a-palooza". I am sure that involved a lot of drinking on their two days off. The security on campus was insane. There were Secret Service agents everywhere, and snipers on the buildings. INSANE!
On Thursday, I got to National's Stadium around 6:30am and participated in confession. I thought it was so nice how priests were volunteering their time to do that. I was so excited to experience the Mass with my good friend Therese and her family, as well as my other good friend, Jaclyn. The security again was really tight, and the crowds were massive.
Once I got down to my seat, I just couldn't believe how FANTASTIC they were. In all honesty, these seats were closer to the altar than the pew that we usually sit in at OUR HOME PARISH. We saw Cardinal McCarrick, Justice Scalia, and Mayor Fenty. We were in the VIP section, apparently!
As I looked around the stadium, I would lose my breath. It's hard to describe the emotions I felt throughout the Mass. We were close enough to The Holy Father that my friend Jaclyn actually touched him on his processional. It was a ONCE IN A LIFETIME experience. I felt reconnected to my faith, and was just BLESSED to be a part of such an amazing community of believers.
Here's a little video montage I put together of the two days: