Home   |  About Us   |  Contacts   |  Products    
 News Items:
 News Briefs
 Word To Life
 More News:
 Special Sections:
 2007 in review
 Inside the Curia
 2006 in review
 Vatican II at 40
 John Paul II
 Other Items:
 Client Area
 Did You Know...

 The whole CNS
 public Web site
 headlines, briefs
 stories, etc,
 represents less
 than one percent
 of the daily news

 Get all the news!

 If you would like
 more information
 about the
 Catholic News
 Service daily
 news report,
 please contact
 CNS at one of
 the following:
 (202) 541-3250


 This material
 may not
 be published,
 rewritten or
 (c) 2007
 Catholic News
 Conference of
 Catholic Bishops.

 CNS Story:

POPE-WELCOME Apr-16-2008 (400 words) With photos posted April 15 and 16. xxxn

Children welcome pope on lawn of apostolic nunciature in Washington

By Meredith Black
Catholic News Service

WASHINGTON (CNS) -- As the black limousine in which Pope Benedict XVI was riding pulled up in front of the apostolic nunciature in Washington April 15, a crowd of schoolchildren stood on the lawn waiting to greet the pope.

After getting out of the car, Pope Benedict stood next to the papal nuncio, Archbishop Pietro Sambi, and stretched his arms toward the children. They waved small papal flags and yelled "Happy birthday!" to him.

One of the children welcoming the pope was kindergartner Katie Rose from St. Raphael Catholic Church in Rockville, Md. She said she was "really happy" to see the pope. Around her neck, she wore a rosary that her mother had given her that day to remember the pope's visit.

Across the street, Catholic groups from around the country stood together, hoping to catch a glimpse of the pope. Some played instruments and sang songs.

One group traveled from Santa Ana, Calif.

"We're here to support the one who is our head," said Father Randy Guillen, a priest traveling with the Santa Ana group.

Maximo Cortez, a young member of the Neocatechumenal Way in Dallas, noted Pope Benedict's support of the spiritual renewal movement.

Cortez said, "It's like he approved my way of life. It's like he's telling us that this isn't all made up. (This is) from the Holy Spirit."

Another group of 40 people came from Dallas.

"We're trying to show the people that Jesus is in every part of the United States," said Alex Alvarez, a member of the group.

Gary Coulter came to see the pope with some of his fellow parishioners at St. Michael the Archangel in Silver Spring, Md.

"I think it's important for us to come out to show the pope that we love him (and) to show the country that the Catholic Church is very much alive," he said.

Ann Marie Heimel said she felt called by the Holy Spirit to travel with her four children from St. Paul, Minn., to see the pope. Her family sold chocolate chip cookies to earn the money to come, and made 1,000 flags stenciled with the words "Christ Our Hope," the theme of the pope's visit, to give out to people.

Heimel said she didn't plan for the trip to Washington. It was "totally on faith," she said.


Copyright (c) 2008 Catholic News Service/USCCB. All rights reserved.
This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or otherwise distributed.
CNS · 3211 Fourth St NE · Washington DC 20017 · 202.541.3250