Pope Benedict XVI officially opened The Synod of Bishops, under the theme of "The New Evangelization and the Transmission of the Christian Faith" with the celebration of Mass in St. Peter’s Square. The Holy Father also proclaimed St. John of Avila and St. Hildegard of Bingen as Doctors of the Church.
It was a wonderful celebration outside the Basilica. As you can imagine, we (members of the synod) were given a special place in front for the Mass. There were so many people for the Mass – in fact St Peter’s square was fully packed. It reminded me so much of the canonization of St MME in 2007.
We were picked up from the place where we stay and brought back. I am happy to have a couple of women from France, Syria, and Holland with me. They are all lay women ; I have not yet met other religious and lay women participants staying in other places.
Here is our daily program : We will leave the place (CIAM, Via Urbano VIII, No. 16) at 8.15 a.m. in the morning and will be back here for lunch at 12.30 and then leave again at 3.45 p.m. and will be brought back by 7.30 p.m. So the whole day is fully packed with many general assemblies and discussions in smaller groups etc with good breaks !
I am fortunate to have the room facing the basilica of St Peter. Very nice view of the basilica from my room. So feels good. The weather is also very pleasant now. I have had plenty of things to read before the first session tomorrow morning. This afternoon was spent in reading. We will get more busy as the days pass by, I guess. Everything is so organized. So it is nice.
Bye for now and much love to all.
United in love and mission,