Monday, September 28, 2015
Last week, Bethany and I had the privilege to attend the World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia because Bethany was there for work. What an incredible gift! It was a blessed time for our family and our marriage feels strengthened and renewed! We had many highlights during the week from having a lunch with an Argentinian family, who packed up everything they had to travel with their family for a whole year throughout North and South America in a 1989 VW van (you can check out their blog here: www.americaenfamilia.com), to listening to great speakers, such as Bishop Robert Barron and Pastor Rick Warren. We got a chance to catch up with good friends of ours from Vancouver - Felipe and Veronica (along with their sweet daughter). We venerated the first-class relics of St. Maria Goretti and St. Padre Pio. Saw children get kissed by the Pope, like this adorable one dressed up in a Pope outfit: http://www.today.com/news/pope-francis-meets-baby-pope-see-his-sweet-reaction-t46551 (PS - if anyone would like to make a similar outfit for our adopted baby, we won't resist :-) ) Not to mention, an awesome festival of families featuring top musical performers and families who personally witnessed to the beauty of marriage and family. Lots to be grateful about. It was an amazing time of grace and joy.
The moment that was the best was meeting and praying with Pope Francis. He drove by us only a few feet away. Then, 1 million people gathered together for Mass on the packed Benjamin Franklin Parkway (with another reported half million unfortunately unable to enter due to the slog at the security check points)! We were able to get in and to pray with the largest Mass crowd we have ever experienced. Providentially, out of the millions of people and thousands of priests who were handing out communion, we also got to receive communion from our good friend Fr. Ambrose Little! What a grace!
We really appreciate Pope Francis' down to earth style and fatherly heart for the family to be a "miracle" of love in today's society, which "threatens perhaps the family more than any other time in the history of man." He offered the challenge to "make peace with your spouse every night" and to ask yourself one question, "In your house, do you shout? Or, do you speak with love and tenderness? It is a good way of measuring our love."
As the Pope led us in the Mass, we silently offered it up for many intentions (for our families, friends, you our fellow blog readers :-) , etc.), but our primary intention was for our adopted child to be as well as the birth parent(s), who will make such a hard and heroic decision. Who knows, our child may already be conceived?! If so, then he or she had two parents ready for him or her and praying in the midst of one million people for his or her loving presence in our family! As Pope Francis said and we prayed, "May our children find in us models and incentives to communion! Not divisions. May our children find in us men and women capable of joining others in bringing to full flower all the good seeds which the Father has sown!" (Here is the full transcript of his homily.) Amen.
Here is a picture of us below at the event. Enjoy:
Please continue to pray for us! Viva la familia! (And Pope Francis please come back soon :-) ).
Oh and here is one more funny thing: Pope Corgi . Hahahaha, yes even dogs enjoyed the Pope's visit, I mean he is named after Francis for a reason!