A pilgrimage is not a pilgrimage without sacrifice.
For me, they have included not being able to own this story. I had unrealistic plans to walk every step of every day’s planned walk, take photos and video and write about it, but then media interest intensified and there were not enough hours in the day to do all that and fill media requests from national and local television, radio stations and newspapers. I’ve got a notebook and head full of material on the Tiller family, but it will have to wait for the Oct. 15 issue of the Review.
Patty Guerra from the NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt. (CR Staff / Paul McMullen)
Father Jack Lombardi can lead a line of 21 pre-teens, teens and adults, stop traffic, conduct a radio interview and pray the rosary simultaneously. I cannot. At some point this story became too big for me to own, and I needed to work the rear of the line to his front, because safety on some winding roads became a serious issue. Besides, there are bright young people joining us along the way to share it with a larger audience and further what the Catholic Church calls the New Evangelization.
Miguel Almaguer of NBC Nightly News with Catholic Review Managing Editor, Paul McMullen. (CR Staff / Maureen Cromer)
More mature colleagues will appreciate the irony of me wrapping an arm around Jorge Ribas, a video journalist for the Washington Post. For 12 of my 26 years at The Sun, my professional goal was to beat the Post, first covering Maryland football, then on Terps basketball, then on the Michael Phelps beat. Now Jorge is working a video story that we cannot wait to see. He is Jesuit-trained, having attended Georgetown Prep and then Boston College. Chatting at the end of the line Friday, he mentioned that his wife is pregnant with their third child. With that, Kevin Brown, the youth minister from St. John in Westminster, led a quick prayer for her, the baby she is carrying, and the entire Ribas family.
Jorge Ribas, a video journalist for the Washington Post. (CR File)
On Thursday morning, we had Patty Guerra from the NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt along grabbing video and conducting interviews. She was born and raised in Monterey, Mexico, went to Catholic schools and has done extensive mission work. She supplied the early footage for a piece the show is preparing for Sunday night’s telecast. Yesterday that spot brought us correspondent Miguel Almaguer and a team that included a videographer whose name escapes me – it’s been a long week – who went to the University of Maryland. We’ll be hard to get to at the papal Mass, and they’re relying on Maureen Cromer, aka Maureen the Social Media Machine, to forward them selfies from our young pilgrims at the Mass.
Thanks to them, and everyone in the media who have taken an interest is this Feet for Francis/Pilgrimage of Love and Mercy.