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Pastoral Ponderings . . .
Ken Stanczyk, Director of Adult Ministry
“Well, I’ve never been to Spain…”
Recently I returned from a two week trip to Spain. My daughter, Lizzy, is studying in Sevilla for the semester, so it provided us with the perfect opportunity to visit the country for the first time. Lizzy is a Spanish Education major and it was great to have her as a guide and translator. She has become quite fluent in the language and we got much better care and attention with her around. My other daughter, Stephanie, was able to get a week off of work so she joined us for the first week. Besides meeting the family that Lizzy is living with and the friends that she has made, we also experienced Flamenco in Sevilla. We also traveled to Granada where we toured the Alhambra palace, and to Barcelona, home of the Sagrada Familia basilica.
Marcy and I were on our own for the second week, when we traveled to Toledo and Madrid. Toledo is a beautiful old city, and wonderful to stroll through at night. Fr. Steve had recommended visiting the city and even provided us with the name of a great, reasonably priced hotel. While there we toured the cathedral. In Madrid, we visited a relatively new cathedral (1993), as well as three art museums, including the Prado.
The weather in general was nice. In fact, the day before we left, the temperature was in the 70’s and we ate lunch outside in Plaza Mayor. There were many people out in the plaza that day, including tourists and entertainers attempting to obtain money from those tourists. There were musicians, human sculptures, peddlers, costumed super heroes and other characters with whom to have your picture taken, as well as beggars. As we were finishing our lunch, a woman dressed in tattered clothes approached our table with her palm outstretched. After being asked for money from the accordion players, sunglass hawkers, as well as other beggars, I shook my head and my hand in the negative. The woman said something to me in Spanish and pointed to the leftover bread in our basket. I pushed the basket toward her and she took the roll. As she proceeded onward, I noticed that she immediately began eating the roll. This woman was not looking for money to buy drugs or alcohol. She was not just posing as a beggar. She was indeed hungry.
Read more from this week’s Bulletin.