Today we visited the smallest country and the largest church in the world – Vatican City and St. Peter’s Basilica. Most of us slept in this morning for a later than normal meeting time of 10:00 a.m. for an 11:00 a.m. reservation for a tour of the Vatican Museum.
It rained on us lightly as we walked to the entrance of the museum, but if it was going to rain on us, today was the day for it since we would be inside most of the day. Our tour guide was great and knew everything there was about the Vatican, basilica, pope, museum sculptures and art. The tour took us about two hours through countless statues and collected works by hundreds of years of popes before we reached Raphael’s rooms and the Sistine chapel, which was filled wall to wall with people as it is every day of the year.
After the museum we walked along the outside of the Vatican walls to St. Peter’s and waited in what looked like the longest line in the world, but moved surprisingly quickly. The church houses Michelangelo’s “Pieta”, as well as the resting place of St. Peter and many popes. We all spent as long as we wanted in the church before we headed out for dinner.