Friday, January 23, 2015

Pope Francis Hangover

Even if it's been almost a week since our beloved Pope Francis left Manila, Pope Francis hangover is still in the air and will remain so for a very long time. It was a short 5-day visit yes but the effect Pope Francis had on everyone is beyond a lifetime. Since papsie and momsie have seen Pope Francis on January 16, 2015 in MOA Arena during the Pope Meeting with the Families, they passed on to us their Marriage Encounter Foundation of the Philippines, Inc. (MEFP) marshalls IDs so we could see our beloved Pope. And so, my sister and I got the opportunity to be marshalls during the final mass of the Holy Pope on January 18, 2015 at Rizal Park.

Even if the event was at 3:30 in the afternoon, we left our hotel which is just along Roxas Boulevard, supposedly a few minute walk to the venue, at 4 in the morning wanting to be ahead of the expected millions of Filipino attendees said to be going there to see the Pope. Surprisingly (or not), we reached Quirino Grandstand and our designated quadrant at 7:30am! After all the pushings and swayings of the huge crowd and kilometric lines of people, we found a good enough spot to stand along while we wait for Pope to come.

At a little over 8 am, we had our breakfast of cashew nuts. Our resources were very limited I tell you. We needed to budget our food and drinks lest we wont survive the day. We had 2 pieces of apples, 3 bottled water, one 'mamon', a medium sized chips and the nuts.

At 10am, it started raining. Did I mention we didn't bring raincoats? Yes! The rain did not stop and we got totally soaked! A good samaritan gave my sister a plastic raincoat because she was already trembling. Frankly, we even thought of going back to the hotel already. But our desire to see the Pope kept us from leaving. The seemingly unbearable situation ironically gave way to a more festive mood and the energetic enthusiasm of the people were rubbing off on everyone.

At 12noon, we shared an apple and the chips and sipped water. Rain still pouring hard. We're drenched and the air stream wasn't helping as well. The harrowing cold making us weak. You know those times when you need to unleash the power of your mind to control your weakness, manage your emotions and focus on the very reason for being? We love the Pope and we wanted to see him.

At 2pm, we shared the 'mamon' and sipped water. Now, we only had an apple left and planned to consume it after the event. The rest of the time was spent watching the monitor which was showing the happenings in UST, hoping to see my niece Aly, who was so lucky for having been chosen as 1 of the 10 school representatives in her school to be sent to UST Sports Field for the Pope Meeting with the Youth.

The crowd started cheering relentlessly when finally, Pope Francis arrived. We were all rejuvenated and I was sobbing! Since it was our first time to see the Pope, we really did not know what to expect. How does it really feel to be in the presence of Pope Francis? It was indescribable! It was rare! My heart jumped out of my chest! It eased everything beyond the physical, beyond exhaustion and beyond discomforts. The feeling is truly beyond anyone's dream. Allow me to share some pictures showing the effect of the overwhelming presence of our dear Pope Francis.

Our very own version of a 'before' and 'after' shot. This one taken at around 8 a.m. just when we reached our quadrant with the rest of the MEFP marshalls. No rain yet. LOL. The other pic was taken at around 6pm shortly after Pope Francis left Rizal Park and after hours of.enduring the rain and of course, the hunger. LOL. 

We will forever be grateful to God for sending "the nearest thing to Him on earth." The feeling of seeing a holy man on earth is truly a very humbling experience. We will always pray for you Pope Francis! 

No comments:

Post a Comment

Be nice.