“And I ask you pray for me. Don’t forget!”

Pope Francis made his first trip to the United States as Pope. He is bigger than any super star alive today! You cannot miss him as he is driven around in his small black Fiat car, understated yet classic car.

On the ground, Pope Francis struck a cord in a lot of hearts as you can see people crying openly during mass captured by television cameras. His messages centered around,

1. The family
2. Poverty,
3. The Power of Love, Truth, and Beauty,
4. Compassion,
5. Faith,
6. Good and Evil
7. Climate change

As I watched the final stopover in Philadelphia at 10 a.m, when his plane touched the tarmac in Philadelphia, he was fresh, and relaxed. By 10 p.m. that evening, when the lights were dimmed for the World Meeting of Families concert, it was amazing to see the pope come alive with an impassioned speech on family after 10 p.m. His sermon was energetic, powerful, and passionate. As one TV personality said, Pope Francis does not shy away from the subject of evil. In his sermon on family, “ anyone who wants to bring into this world a family which teaches children to be excited by every gesture aimed at overcoming evil-a family which shows that the Spirit is alive and at work” no matter where they are from. At age 78, it was incredible to see Pope Francis still on his feet delivering an impassioned sermon after a long long day. A telltale sign when the Pope is tired, is seen when he gets unsteady on his feet and becomes wobbly climbing the steps.

Bobby Hill, a 14 year old aspiring opera singer, blew the crowd away with his amazing accapella performance at the Festival of Families, Pie Jesu, by Andrew Lloyd Webber.

The six-days visit by Pope Francis was truly a piece of Americana. It is everything that Americans are famous for, their warmth, their openness, their spirits, their diversity, and their energies. It made me proud to be an American! As the Pope Francis said, “God bless America.”

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