Benedict XVI to the North American College Alumni

The Pope met today with alumni of the North American College in Rome. The college, called NAC by its students, has graduated hundreds in the past 150 years of its existence.  There is a reunion going on there now in celebration of its 150th anniversary, and the Pope met with them today at the Vatican.

One quote from the Holy Father: “… the Church in America is called to cultivate ‘an intellectual culture’ which is genuinely Catholic, confident in the profound harmony of faith and reason, and prepared to bring the richness of faith’s vision to bear on the pressing issues which affect the future of American society.”

Amen to that.  We desperately need church leaders who are prepared to show how our faith and our ability to reason work in harmony to show us the path to take in so many thorny social and moral issues of our day.

As an aside, I studied at NAC and the Gregorian University from 1977-1978. Men who have studied at NAC are called “bags” derived from the Roman word, “bagarocci” (cockroachs). The native Romans thought that seminarians looked like cockroaches, dressed in their cassocks and the particular round hats that were required for so many years, so the name stuck. A student who prematurely discontinued his studies was called a “paper bag.” A student who studied there during a papal election and coronation is called a “golden bag.” I am both. I saw the deaths, funerals, elections and installation of three popes:  Paul VI, John Paul I and John Paul II.

I prefer to think of myself as a “golden bag”!

About Deacon Bob

Moderator: Deacon Bob Yerhot of the Diocese of Winona-Rochester, Minnesota.
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