Lots of friends in Rome for the week

Yesterday morning I celebrated Mass at 7.30am in St Peter's. I got the lovely altar with the icon of Our Lady Mother of the Church. Above is a picture of the altar that I took earlier this year. Dan Cooper served the Mass and it was very good to meet Mr Scully, the Headmaster of the John Fisher School who is in Rome with his wife to celebrate their 30th wedding anniversary. Another couple also came to the Mass after their son told them about it from reading this blog!

Where I am staying, there are several Bishops who have been taking part in the special Synod of the Church of the middle East. They have been very interested to hear about the Papal Visit to the UK and particularly the attitude of the media. They way in which things are reported is of great importance to them in the sensitive situation of the Church in the middle East.

As it is half term, I have met several other friends who are out on pilgrimage. Frs Nicholas Schofield and Mark Vickers have parish groups. I met them both separately and by chance on the Borgo Pio yesterday. Outside St Peter's Square, I met Fr Tom Regan OSB, the parish priest of Abergavenny. Today I will be saying Mass for the group of altar servers that Fr Stephen Boyle has brought to Rome.

Having boasted to people about the temperature here, I was paid back twice yesterday by being caught in heavy Roman downpours. Today looks much brighter so I will be taking my camera round with me. I'm off up to the Centro Storico now to visit some of my favourite Churches. I expect I will find time to call into one or two favourite shops as well.

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