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Rome Reports

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Singing parish makes pilgrimage to Vatican during final month of Jubilee

About 15 youth from a French parish, paraded through St. Peter's Square proudly waving the flag from their Picardy region of France, to celebrate the Jubilee Year of Mercy during its final month. FR. AUGUSTIN AZAíS  Saint Sixte, Soissons (France) "For the Year of Mercy, the parish proposed to young people to come to Rome to see the pope and to meet Jesus.â? In order to carry this mission out, the five-day trip for all 80 parishioners included visits to the four basilicas with the designated Holy Door in Rome, and additionally the first visit for many to the General Audience to see Pope Francis.  FR. AUGUSTIN AZAíS  Saint Sixte, Soissons (France)  "We saw the pope very close to us, so it was very impressive. We are very happy to see him and to hear him speak to us. I'm not sure that we all understood all that he told us, because it was in Italian, but we will read what he told us today. We have heard about immigration and the stranger, that was very important for us to hear.â? Despite the difference in language and gloomy day, the rain did not stop these pilgrims from soaking up every bit of the Italian culture, especially the gelato and pizza, which they said was one of their favorite parts. "This town is very beautiful. It's not like in France and I love that.â? They prepared and raised money for the Jubilee Year pilgrimage trip during the entire year, and the students also practiced songs to sing in Rome, including "Rejoice! Shout for joy.â?  After such a highlight of seeing the pope, the group was off to buy souvenirs to share the Year of Mercy with all those back home who were unable to come with them to Italy.  MB AA SV -PR Up:AC