What a great night one! This afternoon we all gathered in a room at the hotel for Mass which was offered by Fr. Xavier Colavechio. This was the first time all 24 of us were gathered together. I have to say that It’s the first time I’ve been to Mass in a hotel meeting room. It was so neat though. I guess it just goes to show that the spirit of the Mass is what’s really important not the location.
Following the Mass, we took a jaunt over to a pub for the welcome dinner. The pub was called something along the lines of “dead bird” when translated from Czech. Someone, I think Fr. Xav, had asked the bartender why they named it that and the bartender said the name was chosen because no other pub bore the same name. Imagine that! Unfamiliar with Czech cuisine, I was walking into the meal kind of blind. What a treat though. We were served chicken schnitzel and boiled potatoes for the main course. The schnitzel was great but the fruit filled crepe we were served for desert blew it out of the water.
Post dinner, I got brave and ventured to Old Town to see some of the sights. What a beautiful area. I read that it’s on of the best preserved centers of any major city in Europe because it was spared during the bombings of World War II. The buildings are overwhelmingly beautiful, especially the Church of the Virgin Mary Before Tyn. History has it that originally the gable between the twin black-spires housed a gold chalice but following the defeat of the Czech Protestants by the Catholic Habsburgs, the chalice was removed and replaced by a Madonna. Eventually, the chalice was melted down and made into the Madonna’s gold and glimmering halo. The halo is one of the things that’s most stunning about it.
Tomorrow we’re going to visit the Strahov Abbey which is also in Prague. Strahov is the site of the early remains of St. Norbert so during our visit, we will celebrate Mass at his tomb. How cool is that?
Okay, time for bed now, we’re boarding the bus bright and early and rumor has it that if you’re not on it, well, too bad for you.