Catholic Diocese of Spokane, Washington
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‘A heart full and thankful’: Gonzaga Prep students prepare for papal pilgrimage
the Inland Register
(From the September 17, 2015 edition of the Inland Register)
A group from Gonzaga Prep, Spokane, will be traveling to Philadelphia later this month to take part in the visit by Pope Francis. From left: Jesuit Father Tom Lankenau, Logan Schuh, Natalie Schwartzenberger, Emily Bahr, Francis Bertotti-Metoyer, and Karen McLeod. (Not pictured: Luke Winkler.) (IR photo courtesy of Father Tom Lankenau SJ)
In the spirit of the Jesuit founder, St. Ignatius Loyola, a self-identified lifelong pilgrim, five students and two teachers from Gonzaga Prep, Spokane, will join fellow students from more than 40 Jesuit high schools from the United States, Canada, and Puerto Rico on a pilgrimage to Philadelphia to take part in “2 Philly 4 Francis: Ignatian Pilgrims on the Journey,” Sept. 24-28.
Pilgrims will gather together in Philadelphia at St. Joe Prep and the Gesu School to learn about, pray and reflect on, and celebrate our shared Jesuit and Catholic identity during the historic visit of the Holy Father, Pope Francis, and the World Meeting of Families.
“The pope to me is a role model and a leader. He represents younger generations and is a Pope that I can identify with and learn from, because he addresses modern and relevant issues,” offered sophomore Logan Schuh.
The pilgrimage will culminate with a short walk from St. Joe’s Prep to the Ben Franklin Parkway to celebrate the Eucharist with the universal Church and Pope Francis.
As the day for departure draws near, the students have become more and more grateful just for the opportunity to experience this once-in-a-lifetime event.
“I love to be with those who are also excited about their faith. It causes spiritual growth in the participants,” said senior Luke Winkler.
Senior Emily Bahr perhaps expressed best the sentiments of the group: “My heart is full and thankful.”
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