Thursday, March 14, 2013

Habemus Papam!

Knowing that Mom would be watching today, I asked her to call me if she saw any of the smoke signals from the Vatican so that I could see it. Early in the day she did call once to say that it had been black smoke  that bellowed. This afternoon, she mentioned that the Cardinals had voted again and that smoke would issue forth shortly. The girls and I were visiting Grandma Dolly and we turned her TV on. Soon, we saw White Smoke pouring forth and heard the crowds gathered in St. Peter's Square cheering loudly! What a thrill! I texted the kids so that they wouldn't miss it.
This morning I read that it would take about 50 minutes from the time the smoke rose until the new pope would be introduced and would come out to meet the crowds from the balcony. It was time to take Kit home and when we arrived there, we were invited in by Allison to watch this momentous event.
We watched the evening scene of Rome as they are 5 hours ahead of us and listened to folks speculating on just who new The Vicar of Christ on Earth might be. I had no opinion on the matter but instead had been praying like most Catholics I know that the Holy Spirit would truly guide the Cardinals to choose the right man for the job to guide the church in these difficult times.
When they announced his original name and his chosen name, Francis, the commentators were completely surprised. When he first came out, he was so quiet and reserved and obviously overwhelmed. Then he spoke and smiled and gestured to the crowds. He asked everyone to take a moment to pray for him. The cheering crowds went silent. We, also, joined in praying for this man, who is going to guide our Church.
Then he asked the crowd to join him in thanking and praying for Benedict XVI  by leading us in an Our Father, Hail Mary and Glory Be, in Italian, I think. Our eyes were tearing up, in response to the spirituality we were  experiencing. What a great concept to pray together with all the people there and the many millions watching from all over the world. We all agreed that he was on the right track by unabashedly beginning by  praying aloud and inviting us all to join him.
We knelt in the living room to receive his Blessing and were very grateful to God for giving us what seems to be a holy man. Let us continue to pray for our new Pope Francis.
 Lord God, please help him to know your Will and to Do it, serving You in Love and Holiness. Please help him to continue to bring forth the New Evangelization by attracting the young people, and help him to lead each of us to live the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Lord, Have mercy on me, a sinner. ... God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:7–8).