Tuesday, July 5, 2016
We started our day with Mass at St. Peter’s Basilica celebrated by Fr. Luke Sweeny at the altar of the Sacred Heart, beneath a beautiful mosaic of Jesus with St. Margaret Mary. Afterwards we had time for Confessions and private prayer in the Basilica. We were also able to venerate the statue of St. Peter.
At 10:15 we met our tour guide, Robin, a novice with The Spiritual Family The Work, who took us on the Scavi Tour beneath St. Peter’s. We were amazed at the beautiful excavations and the stories associated with those who were buried in this area. The highlight of the tour was seeing the actual remains of St. Peter. We paused and prayed for the intentions of our Holy Father and all Religious at this holy site. We were inspired by Robin and how he connected the pagan symbols found on the tombs to Christianity.
We then walked across the way to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, and met Fr. Oxley and Msgr. John Kennedy. We met in the Room of St. Dominic and Pius V, where the priests explained the workings of the Congregation and answered questions. These two priests were very joyful and enthusiastic to serve the Church, even though they deal with difficult issues. After a small conference, they took us to their beautiful chapel where we spent a little time with the Lord.
The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith is constituted by the College of Cardinals and Bishops, at the head of which is the Cardinal Prefect. The Prefect is assisted by the Secretary, subordinate to him, the undersecretary. The Congregation staff is composed of officials who, under the supervision of the heads of the various offices, follow questions which fall under the competence of the Congregation and attend to its various duties. The Congregation has three offices, Doctrinal, Disciplinary, and Matrimonial.
We enjoyed some free time in the afternoon.
Fr. Sweeny and the group of pilgrims
On our way to the Scavi
Pictures cannot be taken during the Scavi tour itself
Msgr Kennedy & Fr. Oxley
In the chapel at the Congregation of the Faith