Scenes from the Red Line
I heard earlier that the confluence of Romans and Texans (from the two pilgrimages, Houston and San Antonio) has been particularly noteworthy. Each must be looking at the other like a gaggle of aliens just touched down -- this from the Romans who, as JLA says, pride themselves on having seen it all before. Picture it, people, cowboy boots and cappellini don't mix.
An operative waiting at fermata Ottaviano sends along these boldface bullets, and I pass them along with great thanks:
Archbishop Burke of St. Louis was overheard to say he would be pending part of his vacation in "southern Germany." (Well, he will be in Cologne....)
The St. Peter's statue was all decked out in cape and tiara for the feast of Peter and Paul! (Well, cons, at least something got crowned.)
Statuettes of Peter and Paul adorned the altar DURING the liturgy, along with a multiplicity of altar candles. (Philly has those same statuettes of P&P. They're out all the time.)
Archbishop Chaput of Denver was seen dropping euros in the cup of a gypsy boy violinist as he returned to St. Peter's from the North American College. (Kind as ever, he is...)
Archbishop Dziwisz received the loudest and longest applause of the pallium recipients. (But no chanting "Santo! Santo! Santo!"?!)
Receptions for American archbishops were all held at the North American College, but in separate venues. (But who was running the salons at each? I have my guesses....)
Many American clergy and laity attending the events, already wearied from the strongest heat of the summer, were not impressed with the shoving/pushing crowds afterwards as St. Peter's emptied. Some complained to both civil and ecclesiastical authorities. (Obviously the complainers have no clue about the Italian system of fair play -- i.e. those who kick the hardest get through first.)
If Piero Marini ran crowd control, everything'd run much more smoothly. I'd love to see him head up Divine Worship. Arinze can go to Ischia, Teheran, Steubenville, wherever -- but put the real expert where he belongs....