Italia Parte 4: Roma, Days 2 & 3

Alright, so day 2.... we woke up and went to St. Peter's for Mass.
Gorgeous morning!
It was so amazing to walk into St. Peter's and see every single chapel filled with a priest saying Mass.
Just beautiful.
Our Mass was below the main level...
in part of the original structure of the church
built over St. Peter's tomb.
We had the amazing Liz Lev as our local tour guide.
She is incredible.
Everything she said, you couldn't help but believe what she had to say.
So passionate.
So... awesome. 
The Pieta
I was able to pray in front to Pope JPII's tomb.
So powerful.

 Then we just, ya know, hung out in St. Peter's Square.
Had some lunch and enjoyed the day.

We, then, had such a wonderful opportunity to have a PRIVATE tour of the Vatican Museum AND the Sistine Chapel.

When we walked through St. Peter's... the Pope was in his apartment.
I like to think he was walking around, in his slippers and red PJs... doing all the Pope things.
Now in hindsight... I wonder how much time he was in there praying and thinking and pondering about his upcoming resignation.
So crazy.

The entire time we are in Italy, all we have heard is that the guards at the Sistine Chapel are crazy!
No pics are allowed, and if they catch you they will make you delete them.
We walk into the Chapel, and of course the crowd we are with, remember, could care less!
They are click, click, clicking away.
The guards... who knows where they are?!  When they do finally come back, they could care less, as well.  So, feeling guilty, I pulled out my camera and only took three! :)
Absolutely stunning.
Michelangelo painted that STANDING UP on this special scaffolding he made.
 I just can't believe I was able to be there.  IN THE SISTINE CHAPEL.
So many popes were elected there.
And how awesome that another conclave will happen again in JUST a few weeks.
I am so blessed, it's unreal.

Papal library.
Alrighty... Day 3, we had our tour with Liz of Christian Rome.
Unfortunately, we saw a lot of churches and they kind of started to blend together, plus I am not a huge history/art fan, so it's hard for me to pay attention all of the time.
So, I am not sure I will have a lot of info for the next few. :)
St. Mary of Martyrs... maybe?
St. John's... the first Christian church inside the walls of Rome.
 B/c of that... the Papacy was there for quite some time.
These are the original Pope doors. :)
Stations of the Cross leading up to some relics:
piece of The Cross, nails and thorns.
Jennine and I decided to CLIMB ST. PETER'S DOME!!!!
Yup, we did.

We had just had Mass right down there a few days before.
Then, we went up some tiny spiral staircases.
And, because we are climbing the CURVED dome... 
of course the walls would begin to bend:
I am standing up straight... 
 This was the last part.
This photo is looking up.
The tiniest spiral staircase with only that rope to hold onto!

 And then THIS:

Guh.  I mean... I can't even describe it.
Another view from the dome.
Back inside... statue of St. Peter.
So old... and feet so worn.
So many pilgrims touching his feet.
Unfortunately, it was blocked so we couldn't touch it.
 Then, we had some time before the choir concert. 
Which happened to be right near Santa Susanna church.
And of course we had to bring the babe. :)

The concert was at this basilica which was made out of the roman bathes!
Cool, huh?
This was across the street.
One of my fave pics.
 St. John's choir was amazing!
They had such a great turn out. :)

Let me just tell you...
Susannah was the HIT!
I mean... every.single.person loved the babe.
This was one of the cutest.  I wish it wasn't so blurry.

All of us with Luca (our amazing tour guide, but really Zuzu's boyfriend)!

Wow.. I know this was a long one.  Thanks for making it! :)
One more... for our last day which included our audience with the POPE!!
Until next time!

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