A Welcomed Miracle: S. Mary Ellen Murphy Looks Back on Her Experience at the Canonization
Two Sisters of Charity, Carol Bauer and Mary Ellen Murphy, employed by St. Francis of Assisi parish in Centerville, Ohio, were sent as representatives of the parish to the canonization of Elizabeth Ann Seton. S. Grace Murphy accompanied us on the trip. The three of us joined the pilgrimage arranged through the Archdiocese of Cincinnati and flew to Rome for the grand celebration. As the day arrived we boarded the tour bus to take us to St. Peter’s Square. With the large crowds expected and already gathering, the bus let us off about three blocks from the plaza. The three of us quickly wiggled our way through the hundreds of gathering pilgrims only to discover that the area where we were to sit had been cordoned off with wooden horses. We noticed everyone was waving a white ticket in the air to enter this gated area. We looked at each other with more than a chagrin on our faces as we did not possess any such tickets to get in. The guide on the bus had failed to pass them out to us before we disembarked, not that we gave him a lot of time to do so in our haste to get there. My first thought was that we had come these 5,000 miles for the sole purpose of attending the canonization ceremony and we were going to miss it all as we couldn’t get in without a ticket! As we turned to wind our way back to where the bus let us off in hopes that the guide would still be there holding the tickets, a wonderful sight met our eyes. The guide was right behind us waving our tickets in the air! We got our tickets and entered the seated area for what was about to unfold before our eyes. Without question, Elizabeth Seton was not wasting any time surprising us with a welcomed miracle on this glorious occasion!