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Sister Mary's latest column in Billy Penn

There were months of build-up, then two intense and amazing days, and now the papal visit of 2015 to Philadelphia is history. But most Philadelphians, I believe, are still feeling a deep sense of inspiration and uplift from the experience of this truly amazing visitor, Pope Francis.

Associated Press video of Pope Francis blessing the Knotted Grotto and meeting Sister Mary. 


From the Associated Press, via the Star Tribune

Pope Francis made an unannounced stop Sunday to bless an art installation, a grotto adorned with 110,000 knots, each representing a personal hardship or societal challenge.

The work was inspired by one of his favorite paintings, "Mary, Undoer of Knots." It shows Mary untangling a long ribbon — a symbol of smoothing life's difficulties.



Pope Francis made an unscheduled stop at the Mary, Undoer of Knots Grotto in front of the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul.

He was greeted by Sister Mary Scullion of Project Home and volunteers.

"Oh my God," Scullion said, overwhelmed with emotion. "I am so happy for all of us."

The pope's visit lasted minutes.


From 6ABC

Pope Francis made an unexpected stop Sunday during the papal parade to visit the Knotted Grotto.

At the Grotto, Pope Francis was greeted by Sister Mary Scullion of Philadelphia's Project HOME.

While there, the pope blessed the 100,000 strips of white paper, bearing people's troubles and worries, which were tied to the display.

"He asked us to pray for him and, of course, we asked him to pray for us and bless the knots," said Sister Scullion.


From CBS Philly

During the papal parade in Philadelphia on Sunday, Pope Francis visited the “Knotted Grotto,” located outside the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul.

The “Knotted Grotto”is a public art installation that became a brief sanctuary for reflections by the faithful.


From the Wall Street Journal

Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter insists he hasn’t been thinking nonstop about Pope Francis’ two-day trip to the city, where more than a million pilgrims are expected to converge Sunday for an outdoor Mass.

“I only think about it like 23 hours a day,” he said with a laugh.


From the Philadelphia Inquirer

Was Pope Francis still inside the basilica? Sister Mary Scullion of Philadelphia wasn't sure. The Mass had ended. She had gotten a ticket at the last minute, from some friends. She had stood along a side wall.


From the Columbus Dispatch

Doreen Lehman was overcome as she looked at the thousands of white ribbons knotted onto fishing line, woven in fences and wrapped around railings.

Each ribbon held a prayer, a hope, a wish from someone who had visited the Undoing the Knots grotto, an art installation outside the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul in Philadelphia.


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