Pilgrims at Mother Teresa's canonization

Pastor Robert Seay and 11 pilgrims from Lafayette, LA, were among hundreds of thousands who converged on St. Peter's Square September 4 fo hear Pope Francis declare "Blessed Teresa of Calcutta to be a saint." It was "mind-boggling" to be there for the canonization, says Fr. Robert, one of the chaplains on a tour organized by Proximo Travel. "It was exciting; you have all these languages and people from all over the world," including hundreds of members of Teresa's Missionary Sisters of Charity, some of whom minister at Holy Family School in Lafayette. For Fr. Robert, the most powerful part was "witnessing the universal Church. It was inspiring to be there and witness the power of a person who worked for the poor to bring people together."

Among the honored guests were 1,500 homeless people from throughout Italy, bused to the Vatican, seated up front and served lunch afterwards. While Robert and his group were in Rome September 1-7 they visited a number of holy sites including St. John in Lateran and the Sistine Chapel, "One downer is the security nowadays at all the major churches," he says. "You stand in line, go through a scanner and can't carry a backpack or anything. Sometimes it takes hours."