Had to get up super early this morning, because we wanted a good seat/spot to see the Pope at the Papal Audience. The audience was held inside in the audience hall, which was nice because it meant we got to sit down, and there wasn't any real pushing or shoving. It also meant I didn't have to be as worried about pick pockets in St. Peter's Square.
Here we are awaiting Pope Benedict XVI:
I have to say, I love the Pope's red shoes.
The Papal Audience was sort of interesting. They did everything in 6 languages, which made it sort of long, and supposedly at some point the Pope blessed any religious articles that we brought with us (although I really have no idea when this happened), I got to hear the Pope speak about art enhancing the religious experience, and we said the Our Father in Latin. All in all not too bad, and glad I had that experience.
After the Papal Audience, we decided to go into St. Peter's, mostly because I wanted my mom and sister to be able to spend some time in there rather than rushing around during our tour that was scheduled for Friday. On the way we passed the Swiss Guard...
I love their uniforms.
Inside St. Peter's is probably my favorite piece of religious art, Michelangelo's La Pieta. I could stare for hours.
Of course St. Peter's is gorgeous and every inch is amazing beyond belief, but I'll save some of those pictures for tour day. What I did find cool, was the body of Pope John XXIII. Which is on display, because it is believed he may be incorruptable, and as such not decompose, and be on the path to canonization (sainthood). His body has only been in this case since 2000, when he was beatified. Prior to that he was buried in the Vatican grottoes since 1963.
Before we took a break for lunch, I had to mail a postcard home from the Vatican post-office given that is its own country.
After lunch, it was over to the Vatican Museum, because even though we had a tour planned, you need much more time than a few hours. Here are some of my favorite paintings of angels.
Here is the security guard, Roberto, trying really hard to pick up my sister. It was quite funny.
But Roberto was not a complete waste of time, he did open up the ropes to one of the balconies so that we could get this picture:
After a long day, I love how St. Peter's looks at night.