Rome 2006 Thursday and Friday, June 1-2 Regnum Christi, St. Peters, St. Paul's Outside the Walls

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Part of my time in Rome was spent attending an Encounter for Diocesan Priests sponsored by the Legionnaires of Christ and Regnum Christi.
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While the conferences were all in Spanish, fortunately there was simultaneous translation available.
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In our group were 3 from the US, 1 Italian, the rest Mexican or Latin American - so lunch conversation could be quite interesting.
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Fr. Alvaro Corcuera, LC, the General Director of the Legionaires since Jan. 2005. The Legion of Christ is a Catholic religious congregation established in 1941 in Mexico by Fr. Marcial Maciel. The lay branch of the movement is called Regnum Christi.
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Fortunately Fr. Alvaro speaks good English.
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St. Peter's gleams in the morning sunlight.
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St. Peter's statue is in the Piazza, with the other apostles next to Christ on top of the facade.
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I celebrated Mass at the Mater Ecclesia altar, together with some other American priest I met up with.
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The Clementine altar in the crypt of St. Peter's, which is up against the tomb of St. Peter.
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The simple tomb of Pope John Paul II, buried in the earth as he requested, is already a place of pilgrimage and devotion.
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The Basillica of St. Paul's outside the Walls. Excavations in 2002-03 have confirmed that it is built over a sarcophagus believed to contain the remains of St. Paul.
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Members of Regnum Christi gather for a evening of prayer and reflection as part of the Youth and Family Encounter.
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The first church built over the burial place of the Apostle of the Gentiles was consecrated in 324, attributed to the Emperor Constantine. It was enlarged in 386 Theodosius.
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Unfortunately the Basilica was almost totally destroyed by fire in 1823, but was rebuilt on the same foundations and consecrated by Pope Pius IX.
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A relic room, with dozens of reliqaries of saints.
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Whose's that funny guy wearing glasses?
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In the museum, the original altar stone over the tomb of Paul, Apostle and Martyr, with the holes for objects to be lowered down to touch the tomb.
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The Basilica includes mosaics of all 265 Popes, inclding their name and dates of their reign, from St. Peter to Benedict XVI.
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Statue of St. Paul inside the Church, not the better view of the Mosaic of Pope Benedict.

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