Skip to main content

Vatican Necropolis

http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2672/4046454893_f1cca40869.jpg
I went on a an exceptional tour today.  My first venture was to St. Peter's Basilica, next to the Vatican. Hopped on the metro at 6 am, was through security and at the gates of St. Peter's just in time for the 7 am opening.

We had this immense structure almost to ourselves.  Quiet and majestic.  The structure was built in the 1500's and can hold 60,000 standing worshipers.  That's a ton.

But the big show wasn't in St. Peters, it was under it. I read about a very exclusive tour beneath the current church, where the actual tomb of St. Peter has been excavated.  The web site for the Vatican said to send a request for the tour months in advance, then pray that you are one of the chosen few.

I shot off an email two days out, told them I'm a prof who needs to see St. Peter's bones, and got a reply affirming a Saturday morning tour.  God spiffed old master man again.

After my visit to the basilica, prayer time in the chapel, then obligatory coffee and ice cream, I walked to the Swiss guard house to gain admission.  An intimate group of ten was ushered below the basilica, then down into ancient first century crypts and eventually to the place of St. Peter's tomb.  We had a moment of silence to pray; it's powerful to stand at the grave of a man who walked with Christ.

I could ramble on about details, but I'd suggest you opt for the virtual tour:

http://www.vatican.va/various/basiliche/necropoli/scavi_english.html

This is how life is going for me.  One blessing after another, inclusive of God's invitation to dig deeper into my relationship with Him with expectations for the future.

We're wrapping up this wonderful journey through Italy.  Tomorrow is our last day in Rome, then we're blasting off for the US of A.

Comments

  1. I continue to enjoy your blog. Keep up the good work. It's great to see your venture into academia has not pulled you away from God -

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Scott Jurek ate vegan, won ultras...then got divorced

(Disclaimer:  I am a Brooks-supported athlete; as part of that relationship, I was provided a complimentary copy of "Eat & Run")

I was recently on a few flights making my way home to Wisconsin and en route was able to plow through Scott Jurek's new book "Eat & Run: My Unlikely Journey to Ultramarathon Greatness."

It's a fast, enjoyable read. I've been around the ultra scene for a long time and have known some of the greats, i.e. ultra champ Eric Clifton. So it's always interesting to see how the world looks from another icon's point of view.

My thoughts in no particular order:

1) I've been vegetarian/borderline vegan for 12 years and have always been concerned with protein intake.  Jurek advocates for the protein he naturally induces through his plant-based diet.  Maybe that is enough. Maybe it's not necessary to bang down 100+ grams of protein supplement every day. Good info and good advice.

2) I'm buying on big time to Scot…

Build your low cost gravel and commuter bike

It's the saga of Craigslist. You have a great perfect condition road bicycle to market. You ask a fair price. A few calls come in, most often the caller throws out a low ball offer, maybe 50% of asking price.

You don't need to give the bike away. You may not need the cash.

Consider re-purposing. You already own an excellent commuter and gravel bike. Think your bike is too low end, not good for the purpose?

Wrong. In most cases less expensive bikes are build with heavier parts, which means they are stronger. Heavier wheels = better ability to absorb commuter bumps and gravel roads.

A few simple modifications and you'll be rolling for transportation or logging road expeditions.

Here's my 2011 model Specialized Roubaix. I rode it for several seasons as a serious piece of road equipment. A few buyers offered up a few hundred dollars, so I went in another direction.

1) Added 700 x 28 Continental Gatorskin tires. Gatorskin tires wear like iron and you can trust them in off …

Now this is better...

Hey, I don't want to dole out too many epic photos in one day...but after that fatty shot from the New York City Marathon, I had to dig a bit deeper, and found this:

Check out that attractive specimen (second from right) circa 1986...only a year earlier and Tommy Terrific was looking pretty ripped.

I'll tell you this triathlon training camp was one of the high points of my master competitor career. On the left is Mark Hinson, the best triathlete in the southeast in the mid 19890's...and far right is Frank Kohlenstein, a soccer coach from South Carolina and the dude who got me into ultrarunning...that's tanned and toned Tommy next to David Bailey, one of the greatest men who ever threw a leg over two wheels with an engine.

So, right around the time of this camp, I crewed for Frank at the Western States 100 mile endurance run in California. Hinson ran with Frank through a very tough 20 mile desert section and when he made it to the next check, he pulled me aside and told…