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Friday, May 10, 2013

The vatican

When I was a little girl, my best friend was Catholic. I wanted to be Catholic. I was curious about all the robes, the wine, the language that I didn't understand, and the biggie:  She got to leave school to go to caticism classes. It all seemed so wonderful as a child.

Now as an adult, I have no desire to be Catholic, I'm comfortable in my Christianity faith, but was always curious about the Vatican and the history of the Catholic church.

Four of us arranged a private tour and met our guide Jon, and englishman who came to Rome ten years ago because of a woman. That woman is now his wife, and they have added two children to her one. He had connections in Portland, OR and we quickly bantered with one another and found a comfortable rhythm to walking and talking.

Jon's history knowledge was awe inspiring. He was such a fantastic guide and going into the Vatican City an hour before it opens to the public was one of the best decisions we made. No crowds, walking hallways just the five of us, listening and looking many times jaw dropping art sitting before us.

The Sistine Chapel was all that I had hoped for. We sat in silence for twenty plus minutes taking in the magnificent fresco's that Michael Angelo had worked four years on. The stories of Jesus and Moses laid out before us. All those years ago, and here it was for us to view.

I learned that fresco's were painted on wet plaster and when the plaster dried, the pigment would have seeped to the very depths of the plaster to remain for years and years. If you made a mistake the only do over you would have was to remove the plaster and start again. Painstaking work, and the genius Michael Angelo did it like no other.

There is so much more, and I took a couple of hundred photos. We were so tired last night I couldn't keep my eyes open to finish much. There will be more, once we settle in. For now, here are a few photos from Vatican City.

St Peters Basilica

This is the home of the old Pope. It has been refurbished for him, while the new Pope refuses to live in the Palace. He says it's much to fine of a place for him. No doubt, this is why the people love their new pope, he is a very simple and humble man.

Our guide Jon enriching us with so much.

We filled our water bottles from this fountain. The joke was we were drinking holy water.

The royal steps used by the Pope and some of his cardinals being guarded by a swiss guard. My friend Susie almost had to hang onto my pants as I leaned over to get this shot.  :-)


Gina @ Kleinworth & Co. said...

Incredible place. I grew up Catholic but then decided as a teen & adult that believing in Christ & having a personal relationship with him was better for me & that I was content in leaving the Catholic church. But still- what a remarkable thing to witness - you are experiencing so many amazing things.

lis said...

Your pictures are marvelous, but even better because of your comments.

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