Bl. Pope John Paul II and My Trip to the Vatican’s Roof

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Pope John Paul II

On this day two years ago, I found myself in Rome, jammed shoulder-to-shoulder with 1.5 million people including, purportedly, 1/8 of Poland’s population. We cheered and prayed and celebrated as Pope Benedict beatified our great hero, Pope John Paul II, thus bestowing on him the title “blessed.”

(If rumors are true, Pope Francis will take the final step and canonize John Paul this October, forever making him Pope Saint John Paul II.)

Outside of the beauty of the Mass, the big highlight for me was viewing it from the Vatican’s roof. The night before the beatification a friend gave me a special pass. The pass allowed me to climb on top of the colonnade overlooking St. Peter’s Square to watch the ceremony. The view was astounding. I recorded some video of my journey up to the roof which included a brush in with a camera-hating Swiss guard. Enjoy!


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  • LizEst

    Terrific! Thanks for sharing. Glad you survived the colorful attack!

  • Fr. Darryl Millette

    “Swiss Guard Attack! (But no broken bones.” Haha – awesome video, Brandon!

  • "There is only one tragedy in the end, not to have been a saint." - Léon Bloy