Vatican City

One Family’s Novena to Italy—Mother’s Day in St. Peter’s Square

Mothers Day in St. Peter's Square, Photography by Mark Armstrong

Travel Journal — Mother’s Day at St. Peter’s It was a Mother’s Day to remember for my lovely bride Patti Armstrong as we attended the Latin Mass at St. Peter’s and then, like tens of thousands of mothers on the Square, received a blessing and prayer from Pope Francis. It was a perfect beginning to our day as we later met up with […]

One Family’s Novena to Italy—Day Four

Ceiling in the Vatican Museum Photography by Mark Armstrong

Travel Journal Day Four, May 10, 2015 — The Vatican Museums and the Sistine Chapel The Vatican Museums were established over five hundred years ago by Pope Julius II after the discovery of just one marble sculpture in 1506 that had been buried in a farmer’s field for more than a millennium. That one sculpture, Laocoön and His Sons, has begotten one of […]

One Family’s Novena to Italy—Day Three

The Colosseum in Rome Photography by Mark Armstrong

Travel Journal Day Three, May 9, 2015 — Rome through the ages. It is impossible to see all the sights that Rome has to offer.  But we tried to see as many as possible on our first full day here.  We start off at the famous Colosseum in Rome. Most are aware that early Catholics were martyred here. It was a gruesome […]

One Family’s Novena to Italy—Day Two

Statue of St. Paul at the Entrance to St. Peter's Bascilica Photography by Mark Armstrong

Travel Journal Day Two, May 8, 2015 arriving in Rome, the Eternal City. Touching down at the Leonardo Da Vinci Airport this morning felt like a blessing beyond surviving twenty hours in the air and the usual turbulence. Just prior to leaving Bismarck, we learned of a massive fire that shut down the terminal we were scheduled to land at in Italy. The […]

One Family’s Novena to Italy—Day One

St. Peter's Basilica at Night (and Ponte Sant Angelo over the Tiber)

Travel Journal Day One, May 7, 2015: Leaving Bismarck, North Dakota through Chicago to Rome. I have to admit I never really thought that I needed to see Italy or Rome or the Vatican to deepen my faith. After a 2010 visit, I came home and told my bride Patti that I was wrong about that. In 2010, I took […]