7 Quick Things I learned in Italy

—1— follow the leader to St Peters

I like to follow. Heading off for a pilgrimage with 27 people was a little daunting. I was wondering how that was going to work, touring busy Churches and sacred sites! I learned that I really like to follow the leader with the umbrella, totally free from testing my faulty navigational skills. I like having the saint relics, tombs and significant artwork pointed out to me…because I don’t want to miss a thing.


I learned that public washrooms in North America are pretty awesome. I don’t think I have ever paid to go to the washroom in Canada or the US and even dirty little gas station washrooms usually have the luxury of having a toilet seat…even if you don’t want to go anywhere near it.


chocolate covered gelato

I learned that I have been missing gelato all my life and that sometimes it’s even available dunked in hardening dark chocolate.

safest place in a lightening storm I also learned that the safest place to be in Rome in a lightening storm is under the awning of a café, eating gelato with Fr Scott.


how not to ride the subway

I learned that one should not attempt any of these things when riding the subway.


Catholic graffiti

I learned that even graffiti can be Faith-centered in Florence.


St John Paul II tomb

I learned that asking a guard at St Peter’s Basilica to touch my crucifix to the tomb of St John Paul II was an awesome idea…way better than making a dash for it and probably getting arrested.


selfie with Pope Francis

I learned that selfies are pretty extraordinary when Pope Francis is in them. Thanks to Rosa and Tito for letting me tag along and have one of the special tickets and for Keith for taking the picture!

Visit Conversion Diary for more Quick Takes!


  1. Linda Robillard - Ottawa says:

    What a great time we all had during our Rome pilgrimage. How blessed we are. Fr. Scott’s homilies, the calm and humour of Sue and Mike, the company of our other 20 travelling companions and the awe inspiring Churches and sites of Rome, Florence and Assisi. Even our challenges such as a flat tire on the bus and the torrential rain did not “dampen” our joy and spirit. It was a pleasure to get to know you and share with you. May God bless you and your ministry. I look forward to getting a DVD with all your photos, you take such good ones. I hope that we can get together should you come to Ottawa.

  2. JMJ

    Looking at your photos brings back so many wonderful memories for me. We lived on Sicily for 3 years and traveled to the main land a few times to ‘not miss a thing’ of the experience God had afforded us. I discovered the a person could visit Rome several times – or even live there for years – and not discover all the history our Church has to offer! I’m so glad you had this opportunity and I hope your memories will give you as much joy and faith as mine have given me.

    God bless!

  3. Janine Hammarquist says:

    Looks like you had a great trip. And gelato does make everything great!

  4. You’ll find yourself seeking out real gelato now that you’re back home!

    Those signs on the metro are hilarious!

    Sounds like you had a great trip!

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