Back from Rome

Fr Charles and I had a very good last day in Rome. Having managed to get to bed reasonably early last night, I was able to celebrate Mass early in the morning in the chapel at the Domus Romana and say the day hours after breakfast.

We took a taxi over to St Paul's outside the walls to have a leisurely visit, intermittently taking advantage of the commentary by a very good tour guide who was leading a group of well-behaved Italian teenage schoolchildren.

After taking the metro to the Colosseum, we made a brief visit to the Church of San Clemente. I always recommend this to parishioners visiting Rome for the first time. The top level of the Church has a wonderful apse mosaic, cosmatesque paving and a stone ambo and paschal candlestick.

When I was in Rome as a student, there was a silly table, wrought iron paschal candlestick and lectern plonked in among of the ancient furniture. Fr Guy Nicholls was told by one of the priests there at that time "It's a beautiful Church but not very good for celebrating the new liturgy." That just about summed up the approach to liturgical reform that dominated the 70s and early 80s. Thankfully, the aforementioned modern artifacts are no longer there.

We had eaten rather well during the week so it was a relief to find a good restaurant off the main street which served us some simple spaghetti alle vongole (with clams) and some mixed fried fish suitable for a Friday.

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