Tuesday, May 12, 2009

More Splendor

Today was another glorious day in the sun. Rome is shining! I covered the same ground today that I did yesterday. Except that I took my time and entered every church and every courtyard and explored each ruin that I encountered. I found myself remembering places I had explored with Tara, with both Tara and Maya, with my sister Karen. I ended up missing my family and wishing that I could share this place with them. I am not sure I want to travel alone. It is much more fun to share the experience with others.

I sat next to a missionary in the train from Frascati to Rome. He had lived in Grottaferrata for nine years and was moving to Munich. He had started a church in Rome and had lived in Quito many years ago where he had also started an evangelical church. He asked me about my spirituality and worked hard to convince me to look to Jesus for answers and salvation. I guess that is what he does for a living, but I was taken aback by his probing questions and his insistence. He told me that in Frascati there is a large community of Satan worshippers, which sounded very frightening. He also felt that psychiatrists are not believers, and that Catholics worship Mary rather than Jesus, and only by knowing the bible and praying to Jesus can we be saved. It was an unsettling conversation first thing in the morning.

I followed my feet today, and they wandered around the Imperial Forum and the Palatine Hill, to the Circus Maximus to the wonderful church at the Bocca della Verita. I revisited the Pantheon and the Trevi Fountain and lingered at Castel Sant'Angelo and St. Peter's. I made sure to enter every church that was open and sit and look and admire. My mother's favourite church was always Santa Maria Maggiore, so that was my first stop. Before I knew it the day was over, and my feet were sore and it was time to arrange for my trip home. Now that my three days are over, I want to get home as soon as possible and hug my children and my husband! It is wonderful to get away but equally wonderful to be home. 

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