You could see the timid tears escaping the eyes of 13-year-old students before they were rapidly wiped away by the sleeves of their over-sized sweaters.
The central reason for Francis’ visit, however, was the World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia, where he urged quiet acts of love -“homely gestures” – to strengthen individuals and “the great human family”. “Or even the president”.
Wood traveled from Albuquerque to Washington D.C. and Philadelphia with about 150 other New Mexicans.
“We know the abuses are everywhere in families in the neighborhoods, in the schools, in the gyms”, he said. “All people of all religions can relate to him“. “How will what he said affect the presidential campaign, the way the Catholic school portrays itself and our own lives individually; how will we actually take what he said and change our lives as opposed to how we allow it to just affect us for a moment?”
“To raise doubts about the working of the Spirit, to give the impression that it cannot take place in those who are not “part of the group, ‘ who are not ‘like us” is a risky temptation”, he said. “He’s a sign of Christ’s love“. “We humbly owe each one of you and your families our gratitude for your enormous courage to shine the light of Christ on the evil of the sexual abuse of children”, Pope Francis said. The crowd buzzed with happiness. There wasn’t any pushing or shoving to get the front, only a shared interest in hearing what the pope had to say.
The Rev. Edward Burns, Bishop of Juneau, Alaska, and chair of the Committee for the Protection of Children and Young People, said the Pope’s remarks were “a very clear call, one of accountability”.
And then there is the pope’s position on our LGBT citizens. Everyone looked up to the giant screens broadcasting what happened inside.
The entire class listened with intensity through out the hour-long speech.
Gosar has been critical of the pope for not saying enough about abortion and gay marriage while promoting many beliefs of climate change advocates.
At Independence Hall September 26, Pope Francis spoke directly to immigrants. She was invited by Catholic Charities to come to the event as well as write a letter to Pope Francis, which was compiled into a book that was given to the Pope during the visit.
While I support the Catholic faithful celebrating their Holy See, I do not think the Pope should have been shoved down the collective American throat on every news and entertainment channel. Being a free bird myself, I identify as spiritual but not religious, meaning I believe in God but do not follow any religious institution.
“I thought he delivered a really strong message”, said Roach right after the speech.
Everywhere I went over this past weekend, I saw and was reminded of the great work being done by these Pennsylvanians who were called to help visitors and residents alike be safe, be prepared, and, most importantly, enjoy this uplifting and once-in-a-lifetime experience.
Tim Deely, a seminarian with the Diocese of Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, came to the Capitol with a dozen other seminarians.
It just would not be a good story about the Catholic Church if there was not a few sort of controversy.