AURORA, Colo. – As Pope Francis prepares for his arrival in the U.S., some students from Colorado are getting ready to go see him in person.
This will be Pope Francis’ first time visiting the United States and the first time any pope has come to America since 2008. Groups from all over Denver are making the journey to see him in Philadelphia, including some lucky students from Regis Jesuit High School in Aurora.
Students interested in the trip were asked to write an essay based on the following question: “Why do you want to make this pilgrimage?”
“My faith is the most important thing in my life,” answered senior Cassidy Roderick. “This may be the only chance I will ever get to see the Pope in person.”
Roderick hit the nail right on the head, earning her and five of her classmates a chance for the field trip of a lifetime. The group leaves Thursday afternoon. While in Philadelphia, they will meet with other Jesuit students from around the country.
“There are hundreds of thousands of people that are going to be there and just be part of such an atmosphere of love and excitement and faith is going to be so much fun,” Roderick said.
On Sunday, the group will see Pope Francis in person.
“It’s going to feel so surreal to actually see him in person and not on TV or in a magazine,” Roderick said.
“To see him smile is going to bring a smile to my face, which is going to be cool,” said Davis Handler, another student going on the trip.
Younger people have taken a much larger interest in the Catholic Church since Pope Francis has taken over. He rides the subway and uses Twitter, making him more relatable to younger Catholics.
“He’s so humble and I think for especially the youth to see that in a world that is so crazy it definitely brings some hope,” Handler said.
Pope Francis is scheduled to arrive in the U.S. on Tuesday. He will make stops in Washington, New York and Philadelphia. In addition to a Sunday Mass, the pope will meet with President Barack Obama, and address Congress and the United Nations. He will spend six days in the United States.