Blue Jays Travel on Pilgrimage to Philadelphia to See Pope Francis
A group of six students and two faculty members are taking flight for Philadelphia on Sept. 24 to see Pope Francis. The group is joining delegations from more than 40 Jesuit schools from the United States, Puerto Rico, and Canada for this historic moment in the Church’s life. The Jesuit high school in Philadelphia, St. Joseph’s Prep, will host the Blue Jays and will serve as home base for the pilgrimage. This massive undertaking on the part of “the Prep” will provide an excellent environment to celebrate this first Jesuit pope’s visit to the United States!
The pope has included Philadelphia on his American agenda in order to support the World Meeting of Families, a congress hosted by the Pontifical Council for the Family every three years since 1994 to promote the Gospel vision of marriage and family life. The World Meeting of Families theme for 2015 is “Love Is Our Mission: The Family Fully Alive,” highlighting the impact of rich family life on our society. This particular gathering has special significance in anticipation of the Synod of the Bishops on the Family to be held in October in the Vatican.
The Pope is also visiting Washington, D.C. and New York, where he will be speaking with the President at the White House and giving addresses both to a joint session of the United States Congress and to the United Nations General Assembly, among other activities. When the Jesuit students catch up with the Holy Father in Philadelphia, they will have access to the Meeting for Religious Freedom taking place on Saturday afternoon on Independence Mall. On Sunday morning, the entire delegation from all Jesuit schools will process to the Ben Franklin Parkway for the Papal Mass said by Pope Francis to conclude the World Meeting of Families.
Attending the pilgrimage from Jesuit will be seniors John Kemmerly, Justin Vlosich, Matthew Torres, Brady Stiller, Francesco Pineda, and Brandon Wolff. Faculty assisting with the pilgrimage are the school’s Chaplain, Fr. Kevin Dyer, S.J., and the director of Campus Ministry, Mr. Jeremy Reuther. In anticipation of the pilgrimage, senior Matthew Torres had this to say: “This pilgrimage to see Pope Francis is a once in a lifetime opportunity. I think this pope is just excellent at making the faith seem accessible to so many people. I can’t wait to be surrounded by fellow Catholics who love the Holy Father and want to hear him preach the Gospel.”
Please keep the these men in your prayers as they travel to Philadelphia from Sept. 24 – 28. You can keep up with all the action of the Blue Jay pilgrims by following the Campus Ministry Instagram @society_of_jaysus.
wwltv.com – Locals travel to Philly for Pope Francis’ visit (Video)