|At 8 am in the morning, view of stage utterly blocked by |
press bleachers. Not Philadelphia's finest moment.
What was not so lovely was the view. The press area had been set up between the standing crowd and the reserved seating directly in front of the Pope. This meant that at an event where we were about 300 or so feet away from the Pope you couldn't see him, even as a dot. People who had driven from as far away as Montreal were very disappointed. The Jumbotrons were set low, so even though I was about 20 feet away from one, it was hard to see in the press of people when the Pope was speaking.
|New friends with whom to pray Morning Prayer.|
I did two media interviews: one at the start of the day and one at the end. I met Giovanni, whose mother stood next to me on Market, who was singing for the Papal Mass the next day. I played peek-a-boo with two delightful kids across the street from me. I prayed. I read a book about hermits and recluses. I watched the clouds.
I loved watching the Mass, and hearing the voices of those around singing the responses, the Sanctus in Latin, the Amen. I read the text of his homily on line! What about you, he asked. How will you respond?
What was the Philly Pops playing as the Pope emerged from Independence Hall, wondered the college aged people standing next to me. "Fanfare for the Common Man" by Aaron Copland. Not some Star Trek theme. No, I assured them.
I strained to listen to every word of the Pope's talk, on religious freedom and immigrants. We are the voices of the those at the margins. We are voice for the transcendent.
I loved listening to all the voice praying the Our Father, Pope Francis' voice gradually fading out, and ours carrying it. What about us? Can we carry the work forward as well as the prayer?