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Reisverslag Rome en Assisie,  26 augustus   -  8 september 2006

 

door Jean-Marie Stam en Alina Bonen.

We hebben met zijn vijftienen dit jaar een vakantie doorgebracht in Rome en Assisie. Het was een vakantie in twee delen, in twee heel verschillende steden. Cultuur, geloof en natuur, de drie elementen van de “Pastoor Otto reizen“, waren dit keer zo vermengd dat ze nauwelijks uit elkaar te halen waren. 

Rome is een grote stad, sinds twee duizend jaar het centrum van het Rooms Katholieke geloof. Gedurende de eeuwen hebben martelaren, keizers en heiligen hun weg naar Rome gevonden. Kerken, relikwieŽn en bijzondere graven hebben haar gemaakt. Maar ook de zon, de wijn, de fonteinen, de mode en het goede leven zijn er te genieten. Rome, de eeuwige stad, heeft het allemaal. 

Uit Alina's weblog: 

Today is Wednesday: audience day. This morning I got up early after little sleep due to a walk on the Piazza Navone last night. But I had to get up early, if I wanted to meet the Pope. So after our 7 o'clock breakfast we wandered off to St. Peter's square. When we arrived, a little after eight, it was already crowded. There we learned the audience would be inside. The line grunted and slowly we moved toward the building where the Pope would appear. We killed time by singing songs. After passing customs, we ran inside and got a seat in the middle. When the arrival time of His Holiness drew near, I squeezed myself sidewards to the corridor the Pope would take walking down to the stage. I was almost crushed, but it payed off. When he passed, I got a change to shake his hand! One of us got a rosary and the Holy Father mentioned our little group. 

After that exiting experience I went out to get some fresh air, to cure my headache. The others waited 'till everyone had left the building, but I had to get out right away. I wanted to by some stamps for Henkie and my priest., so I went into the Vatican Post office. After that I went to the Vatican Museum, to glance at the riches and have a prayer in the Sixtine Chapel. It cost me 12 euros, but considering everyting in there is monumental, it's a bargain. It struck me, however, that so many people forgot to look around them after they had left the chapel. 

Back outside, some 3 hours later, in the scourging sun, I decided to take a bus back home. I didn't where to get off, but when I saw a street-sign saying " Casa Bonus Pastor" I knew it was time to leave. Tonight before diner we have the Holy Mass in the Sister's chapel. After diner, we wanted to visit the Trevi fountain. We planned on taking the metro on the way there and to take an early bus home so we would be in before the gates close at 11 pm. Then reality kicked in. We arrived at the metro station at 21:01 to find out our metro line stops at 21:00. A nice carribinieri told us what bus to take. It was a bumpy ride and after a little walk we lavished ourselfs at the Trevi. 

At the Trevi it was crowded so we had to take good care of our belongings. We left around 10 so we could take the bus at the Piazza Veniza and be home on time. The sign at the bus-stop said the bus should arrive in ten minutes or so. It didn't. After 45 minutes of waiting the bus finally came. WE entered and the driver left. After 15 minutes of more waiting, we saw another bus home and we went to it to ask the driver if he also would stop so long or take off right away. He answered " In a minute" and four of us (including me) decided to go with him. We just sat down as we saw the other bus we just left take off. While we waited another 5 minutes. Five long minutes. 

When we passed St. Peters square, a crowd of Germans overtook our quiet bus. The had had the same experience and were complaining loudly. Unfortunately they had to leave at the same stop as we did. When we got out of the bus and a little away from the Germans, one of us discovered her purse missing. Fortunately it only contained 10 euros and a bank card and I had a telephone number to block it. It was way past twelve when I exhaustingly climbed into my bed....

PS: I did manage to give a all-twine knotted rosary from Rosary Army to the Holy Father.......

Assisie daarentegen was ingetogener, eenvoudiger. De stad staat in het teken van de heiligen Franciscus en Clara, van de frescoes van Giotto. Elke dag lopen pelgrims de route vanaf de eenvoudige Porciuncola tot de hermitage in de bergen waar Franciscus, met broeder Leone en broeder Egidius hebben gewoond. Assisie is eenvoudig, is gericht op God en natuur.



Met zijn vijftienen hebben we dit samen belopen en beleefd. Onze sandalen raakten vermoeid van de vele trappen en heuvels, onze ogen kregen blaren van de opeenstapeling van Giotto’s fresco’s en onze tongen werden losser van de wijn. Maar we keerden ook terug vol inspiratie en bijzondere momenten. Emotie bij de graven van Johannes Paulus II en van de heilige Franciscus, plezier met de gitaar en het 30+ lied van Danielle, zweet bij het beklimmen van de berg waarbij de top, volgens Pastoor Otto, steeds net 40 meter verder was. Elke ochtend een Heilige Mis in een bijzondere kerk, getekend door een bijzondere heilige, en elke avond een ijsje en een wijntje op een Italiaans pleintje. 

Het was een fantastische vakantie. Reisgenoten en Pastoor Otto hartelijk dank.


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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