The Roamin' Roman

Benvenuto! You have happened upon the blog of a wandering Catholic American college student studying for a year in Rome, the Eternal City. You will find here my pontifications, ruminations, reflections, images, and ponderings on my life in Rome. Ciao!

Tuesday, June 27

The final day.

This is it - the Last Day. It's been a busy one, at the moment I have just a few minutes to spend online, as I returned "home" to Bernardi briefly to do, once and for all, my packing. Looks like it'll all make it - my bags are a wee bit over the weight limit, but from the experiences related by the other students it shouldn't be a problem. So, I am about to leave Bernardi again, go out for a last night in Rome, and then come back here early tomorrow morning for the Last Time. Rome is about to finally be rid of me!!

The scrapbook of the blog will of course be added to more soon, but for now in the few minutes I have allow me to just reflect a bit here. Not sure what exactly I want to say, so I guess we'll see what it ends up being!

When I think of all the graces that God has given me this year, when I consider all the places I have been, when I remember with joy all the wonderful people that God placed into my life's path during these past 11 months, I cannot help but be utterly grateful - and yet not grateful enough. I do not think I, or anyone, can ever appreciate all the gifts that we are given in our lives, gifts from God of course, but also the gifts that we are given by God through others.

Marvelous as the places are, amazing as the landscapes can be, beautiful as St. Peter's or Krakow is - none of it is of any value outside of the people that make them so. Friendship, and the general goodness of the people of God in this world, is a central part of our lives - it is how we come to see that friendship itself is the entire point of our lives. By living friendship on earth, by drawing closer to one another in love and sacrifice, we prepare ourselves to be able to choose friendship with God in heaven for eternity.

So many people have made my time here what it is - but of course, no matter where we are it is the people that are in our lives that fill the spaces of the world with life! So many people await me back in Minnesota, first and foremost my family (we have not seen each other in 11 months, and I feel the weight of 11 months worth of hugs crashing down upon my shoulders already! I can't wait!) but of course also all my friends who are so dear to me, all the people who are a part of my daily life in Minnesota. I miss all of you dearly!

But the price that I paid, to be without the people I love for so long, was well recompensed by the friends that I have made here in Europe. People from all walks of life, all corners. From Italy, Ireland, France, Germany, Austria, Poland, Chile, Australia, India, South Africa, Canada, and on and on and on. Young people, parents, priests, old Polish ladies, students, religious sisters, seminarians, professors, average citizens. Every place I went, I went without knowing where I was going, but I knew that by the Providence of God someone would be there, some good samaritan. My faith has not been proved wrong!

Thank you to all who have participated in making my year so amazing - beginning with my parents, who have supported me so well in my education and in my search for the will of God in my life. The rest of you, too numerous to begin to name (and I really don't want to start making an Academy Awards speech here!), whether you know who you are and how you touched my life or not (the 8 people in Warsaw who each in turn helped get me to my lodging late at night with great kindness and patience, for instance!), you are all in my prayers and I am grateful to God for each and every one of you! In a special way, thank you to all of you who have been reading the blog, living in a sense with us here in Rome, and who have prayed for us here as we encountered both joys and hard times.

God bless you all - Omnes cum Petro ad Iesum per Mariam!

See you in a few days!

Make it a habit to raise your heart to God, in acts of thanksgiving, many times a day. Becuase he gives you this or that... Because someone has despised you... Because you don't have what you need, or because you do have it. And because He made His Mother, who is also your Mother, so beautiful. Because he created the sun and the moon and this animal or that plant. Because he made that man eloquent and you he left slow of speech... Thank Him for everything, because everything is good.
~St. Josemaria Escriva, "The Way" #268


  • At 6:03 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Thanks for sharing your year in Rome with us.

  • At 6:11 PM, Blogger Jeffrey Smith said…

    What am I going to do without a regular supply of those wonderful pictures? I'll make a suggestion, there are beautiful churches everywhere. Try posting some from this side of the Atlantic. Thank you and may God bless.

  • At 9:48 AM, Blogger Arp said…

    I hope you will go on with yor blog in the US. Thanks for sharing with us this year in Rome.

  • At 12:39 PM, Blogger Ray from MN said…

    +veritas+ gratias

    Welcome Home!

  • At 4:38 PM, Anonymous said…

    Among many who have enjoyed your doings in Italy and Europe, I wish to thank you for such a beautiful scrap book. The pictures were marvelous.

    I pray for your continued success in life.

    Welcome home!

  • At 6:57 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I came in late during your stay in Rome and never really understood what took you there for so long. How does one get to stay eleven months in a place others can only dream of attending?
    I've thoroughly enjoyed your pictures and commentary and felt a twinge of pain at your leaving there. With an Italian heritage given me from both parents, I yearn to experience a more thorough visit than the few short trips I've made throughout my life.
    God bless you and thank you for sharing your year with us.


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