Wednesday, March 25, 2009
So the Legionaries of Christ are some really amazing guys! Since today was the feast of the Annunciation, the Legionaries invited us over for dinner, the 430 Legionaries that is... So we had about a 5 course meal filled with wonderful food and drinks. We had some great conversation! I sat at a table with a Korean, a Mexican, and an American... who all spoke English, Italian, and Spanish! On top of the delicious meal, the Bishop of Milan was there and we met him. How awesome is that! Also, we went to a mass in Italian, with Spanish and some Gregorian chant!!! To top it all off, the Legionary band performed after dinner. There was a collection of violins, guitars, marimba, mandolin, keyboards, drums... and they played a mix of tunes from Italy, Mexico, and Europe. I felt like a king in Medieval times who reclines at table, feasts on turkey legs, and ends being entertained by minstrels. What a wonderful night! Ave Maria!
Posted by Matt Merry at 6:31 PM
Sunday, March 22, 2009
This weekend I went to Castle Gondalfo for a spiritual retreat. We stayed at an amazing retreat center with some sweet little nuns and a beautiful mysteries of the rosary path. The legionaries ran it and gave some amazing talks on leadership, debating, and they lead some great meditations on Jesus' entry into Jerusalem and about how earth shattering it was when He washed the feet of the apostles. He was suspected to be a great leader, a king. The apostles were thrown when Jesus washed their feet, the work of a servant. It was a really wonderful retreat and I got a chance to grow spiritually closer to Christ. We were supposed to go to Subiaco for the day but the bus driver didn't know that so he took us home to the Real. Lamesauce. Anyways, I'm having a great time and I can't wait to tell you all of my wonderful stories about Italy. For Palm Sunday, I get to carry a huge cross for world youth day at the Vatican. It's gonna be great and I can't believe I've been so blessed with these experiences. God is working in my life!! May He bless your lent and help you to truly prepare for the glory of the Resurrection at Easter!! Peace be with you.
Posted by Matt Merry at 2:53 PM
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
Sorry about the long time between blogs. We're finding more and more chill internet spots here in Rome but being a world traveler doesn't allow too much wireless time. This past weekend I was blessed enough to go to Venice and Padua!!! We got to Venice before the sunrise and we got to see the sunrise over some gondolas and the water... BEAUTIFUL!!! Check fb for pictures. We spent the day traveling about Venice and looking at different churches. We saw the tomb of St. Mark!!! We are seeing so many amazing things!! That night we went to Padua via train and got to stay at a hostel. I dried myself off with a bed sheet since they didn't have towels and I got my dinner from a vending machine ;) The next day I went to Mass in the basilica of St. Anthony of Padua!!! I prayed at his grave and saw a relic room where his incorrupt tongue rests. Crazy stuff!! I strolled the streets and saw the town. That night we went to an Australian bar where the bartender spoke 10 different languages, no lie. It was so much fun!! Then we took a 7 hour sleeper train where I was between two pairs of random stinky feet. I woke up to an Asian man yelling into his phone at 5 30 am. Lamesauce. Today I got to travel to the beach and enjoy the sun and some sweet views. I'm having a blast and learning a lot about myself here in Italy!! Please continue to pray for me and I am gladly still accepting prayer requests. How about I light a prayer candle for you in an ancient church in Italy ;) Tomorrow I'm getting my haircut legionary style so stay tuned for pictures. I was invited to be on of the 4 guys that carries a huge cross on palm Sunday for world youth day at the Vatican. Stay tuned for that as well. I'm praying for you and I love you!!! God bless.
Posted by Matt Merry at 5:12 PM
Thursday, March 5, 2009
Sorry it takes so long between posts but the internet access is limited here in Rome. First of all, God bless your Lent!! Really take the time to ponder the mysteries of our faith and grow close to the Sacraments, especially confession and the Eucharist.
So this past weekend I took my first trip out of Rome to ASSISI!! It was the most peaceful place I've been here on my trip. There are so many beautiful churches but they're very different than the ones here in Rome. They aren't as highly decorated due to St. Francis' views of poverty and its importance. Still, the most peaceful place. I got to see the body of St. Francis of Assisi, St. Clare, some really beautiful churches like the basilica of S. Francesco(St. Francis), Saint Maria of the Angels, the basilica of St. Clare, and many other cool things. I even explored a castle on the top of the mountain. Assisi is a beautiful city layed out on the side of a mountain with the fortress on top, which wasn't actually a castle, just a plot by the Church to scare away people. Pretty cool I thought. I wish I could tell you more but I have to eat breakfast, go to class, and take a tour of the Vatican Museums ;) This weekend I'm going to Florence and Sienna!! Pray for me. If you've been and you have any suggestions, facebook or email me. Matthewemerry@abbey.bac.edu.
God bless you!!!
Posted by Matt Merry at 1:51 AM