Rome 2006 Wed. May 31, 2006 St. Peters, Vatican Museums & Garden, Pope Benedict XVI

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Arriving at Piazza San Pietro, the Basilica of St. Peter.
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A group of visitors from Nebraska, including my seminary classmate Fr. Damien Cook. He is practicing shouting "Tu Est Petrus" for when Pope Benedict arrives.
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Tu est Petrus. Pope Benedict XVI pulls into the Square.
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Yes, he's that guy in white in the center of the photo.
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Pope Benedict waves to the crowds.
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At the Wednesday audience, Pope Benedict recalls he just complete trip to Poland, and the millions of people who welcomed him.
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During his pilgrimage to Poland, he visited many of the site associate with his predecessor, the late Servant of God Pope John Paul II.
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Arriving inside the Vatican Museums. The Courtyard of the Pigna, named for a gigantic bronze pinecone (not the metal sphere in the center, created in 1990.)
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Now don't expect me to label everything in th museum, there's just too much.
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You have written well of me Thomas.
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Tapestry of the Adoration of the Child Jesus
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The Map cooridor.
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Domine Quo Vadis - St. Peter asks: Lord, where are you going?
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In Hoc Vince - In this sign you will conquer - the conversion of Constantine.
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The Sacred Heart and St. Margaret Mary
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Triumph of Christian religion that refers to the destruction of the pagan idols and their replacement with the image of Christ, ordered by Constantine throughout the empire - by Tommaso Laureti, 1585.
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So-called Disputation of the Most Holy Sacrament, more rightly the Triumph of Religion. At the sides of the Most Holy Trinity is the Triumphant Church. On the ground, at the sides of the altar on which the Most Holy Sacrament dominates, is the Militant Church.
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Sistine chapel, Michelangelo's Last Judgement (1535-1541). Pictures are not allowed, so I suggest you see the Vatican Museum's Virtual Tour
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Sistine chapel: scenes from the Life of Christ: The Giving of the Keys to Saint Peter Pietro Perugino (c. 1450-1524)
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A view of Michaelangelo's famous dome from inside the Vatican Museums.
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Sarcophagus of Junius Bassus
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The Good Shepherd
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Santa Maria sopra Minerva, Our Lady above Minerva. Built in the first half of the 4th century, on the ruins of a Roman temple, probably dedicated to Minerva. The present church dates to c. 1280, and became an important church for the Dominicans.
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Tomb of St. Catherine of Siena, who died in a room near the sacristy in 1380.
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The Pantheon
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St. Louis of France, completed in 1589, dedicated to St Louis IX (King of France, killed in the 8th crusade in 1270).
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The fifth chapel on the left was decorated by Caravaggio 1599-1602, depicting three scenes from the life of St Matthew, here the Inspiration of the Gospel and the Martyrdom of St Matthew.
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The Call of St Matthew by Caravaggio.
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It is, of course, the French national church, restored 1749-1756.
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St. Augustine's Church, entrusted to the Augustinian order, it was first completed in 1446, but later enlarged and decorated.
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Crucifix which St. Philip Neri prayed before.
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The church holds the tomb of St Monica, St Augustine's mother (not seen due to renovations). Perhaps for this reason it houses this statue by the entrance venerated as the Madonna del Parto, the Madonna of Childbirth (1516).
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Piazza Navonna, originally the Circus of Domitian.
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Castel Sant'Angelo, originally the tomb of the Roman Emperor Hadrian, erected on the right bank of the Tiber, between 135 and 139. Later it became a Roman, and then Papal, fortress. Now it takes its name from the statue of St. Michael on top.
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St. Peter's as seen looking down the Via della Conciliazione, which on Sat. evening would bw completely filled with people, all the way to river.
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Facade of St. Peters, completed in 1626, and still one of the largest basilica in the world.
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Inside, the Basilica is 186 m long, the main nave is 46 m in height and the height of the dome is 119 m. It includes: 45 altars, 11 chapels, around 10 thousand square metres of mosaics and many masterpieces of art.
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Tomb of St. Pius X
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Preparing to enter the Vatican Gardens, I met up with this group of American students (for the second day in a row!)
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The sistine chapel, as seen from outside.
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For the Feast of the Visitation, there was a Rosary procession through the Vatican gardens, as seen here.
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Arriving at the end of the rosary for a Liturgy of the Word, we await the arrival of Pope Benedict XVI.
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I say hello to the Pope for the second time in one day.
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Grotto of Lourdes where the prayer service was held.
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Nice picture of St. Peter's dome at night.

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