Live-blogging Beatification John Paul II

(Photo Source

He is a Beato! Loved singing the Gloria, in Latin, with my fellow Catholics. Bells ringing all over Rome!

8:33 AM After doing more grousing than a mature woman and a Christian should, I stood up, watched the chopper overhead, the stunning vista, the crowds, the placement, the choir…and I was just overwhelmed. I found myself doing the hand-to-chest thing: holy moley, look where I am! This is unbelievable; it is breathtaking, heart-aching, staggering, and I want to share it with the people I love! I want my family! I haven’t deserved this incredible privilege. I haven’t earned it. Pure gift, unearned. Holy. Moley.

7:32 AM: Okay, the Polish nuns in the grey habits and I are having a turf war. They want me to shove down until I am sitting behind a statue, so they can all sit together. Sorry, gals, I got here at 6 AM and chose this spot carefully, and Brides of Christ or no, pal of JPII or no, you’ll have to sit around me cuz I ain’t budging. But if you can give me a space heater or a shawl, I could be persuaded! Without either of those things, however, no heat, no seat! NO HEAT, NO SEAT!

6:45 AM ROME: Here I sit on the loggia, almost directly above the altar where mass will be celebrated and Pope John Paul will be proclaimed a Beato (blessed) by his successor, Pope Benedict XVI.

I arrived here following many pilgrims on foot, and was through security and making my way up four flights of stairs, arriving on the loggia as the clock struck 6am. I am here by the grace of God and the graciousness of one Knight of Malta who very kindly offered me his arm for the full ascent.

Admittedly, the skirt might have been a bad idea. The morning air, which at 4am was redolent of night jasmine and giddy excitement, has left a dew that has some nuns slipping. They were smart enough to bring tarps, though, while I, in my rush to get here, left my scarf in my room. My thin jacket, which I admit got a little sweaty in the climb, is cold. I can hear my mother in my brain, “this is how you get pneumonia…” I just wish I had worn the pedal pushers under my skirt as I had considered. Yes, I am dating myself wih that reference!

When I arrived, the square was empty but for press and tireless nuns. Now, it ia 6:45 and the square is perhaps 1/3 full of pilgrims. I really hope the sun comes out soon! Rome in the distance, in the rising mists, is gorgeous and almost surreal and ethereal. But I need a little warmth now! Pray for me that I get warm!

Meanwhile, be prepared! I am going to live-blog as much of this as I can. Check back all night and day– usually i try to post newest stuff first, ala Instapundit but am not sure how doable that is with an iPad.

And, yes, I have all of your intentions with me!

About Elizabeth Scalia
  • Craig

    Check your FB messages ;) I am hear with ya !

  • waltj

    I was in St. Peter’s this year for Easter. I was early, although not as early as you, and it was quite cool then, too. By the time Mass began at 10:15, it was just right, and by the end of the Urbi et Orbi message ended around 12:40, it was warm enough for short sleeves. Pneumonia notwithstanding, hang in there, it’ll be worth it.

  • Sean

    We’ve been watching as much as we can of the Beatification on EWTN, though we probably wont see all of it live. Thanks again for bringing the intentions to Rome, Elizabeth! Stay warm… maybe you’ll keep your body heat up if you can remain within the huddle of nuns. (It took me a bit to remember what a pedal pusher was!) Brandon, blogger for “The Thin Veil”, should be there. It turns out he lives up the road from me, as revealed by following one of your links.

  • Margaret Duffy

    I’m following you on Twitter too. Was at the beatification of Mother Katherine Drexel by JP II in 1988. It was in the basilica, so not so crazy, but not so exciting either. And now I’m seeing JP II being beatified himself! Wow! God is good.

  • Clayton Emmer

    Thanks for live blogging! I arrived at Vatican City at 7:30 am, after walking the route of the churches participating in the White Night Vigil from 5:30 – 7 am. They had stopped admitting pilgrims into the square, and even the alternate sites with the videoscreens were getting very crowded. So I’m back at my B&B watching the coverage online, which is very good, and comfortable. Will go to Mass later at St. Paul Outside the Walls.

  • Beth

    Thanks so much Anchoress!! Thanks for live blogging as we don’t have EWTN! Thanks too for taking our intentions!
    Jesus, I Trust in You!

  • Frances

    Thanks, Anchoress! I’m so happy you made it. I saw all those people up there and wondered where you were in the photos. Does anyone know if there is somewhere for us WestCoasters to see the whole thing replayed? EWTN is being rather bad about this as I cannot get any pieces of the Beatificiation to play at all online.

    So happy for you! By now you are having dinner and drinking vino in Roma!

  • SKAY


    Thanks so much for your generosity and for sharing your experiences with us.

  • Cowboy Papist

    Holy Moley, indeed, little missy! Wow, did I get emotional – what great writing; thanks so much!

  • jkm

    I told you to watch out for the ninja nuns. Good ground-standing! And thanks for the chills–both weather-related and emotional.

  • Barbara Peters

    Thanks for bringng my prayer intentions with you.

  • Greta

    Somehow it seems fitting that you are there to see this.

  • Pius XIII

    Check out the JP2 – Divine Mercy – Osama Bin Laden connection here: