Last leg of Guam Divine Mercy Pilgrimage 2017

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VIENNA, AUSTRIA SCHONBRUNN PALACE

We were in Vienna, Austria on July 20, 2017 for the last leg of our pilgrimage. We stayed at the Ananas Hotel right in the heart of Vienna, once dubbed as the cleanest city in the world.

One of the great sites that we visited was the world famous 14th century Schonbrunn palace which has 1,141 rooms and 1,500 servants of the Royal Family of Franz Stephen and Maria Teresa who were the most outstanding figures of the palace from 1740 to 1780. The couple had 16 children, 5 sons and 11 daughters.

With its long and momentous history, the imperial palace complex of Schonbrunn is one of Austria’s most important cultural monuments. The whole ensemble which includes the palace and its ancillary buildings with its numerous architectural features, fountains, and statues together with the zoological garden, is said to be one of its kind in the world in use today.

We had a great tour of the palace, so marvelous that you feel its pristine past come alive in our modern times. Every souvenir photo shot we had in this place gave us a piece of its illustrious history. It’s a place you should never miss to see while in Vienna to make your visit complete with lasting memory and delightful experience.

What especially caught my attention among the many salient historical information and narratives our tour guide told us was the occasion of the royal wedding banquet. She mentioned that only the noble and elite class in the kingdom were invited to the party.

What’s stunning is that they were not allowed to dine with the royal family, but simply stood at the side and enjoy watching them eat all through until they’re done. If it took hours, so be it; they stayed. Accordingly, for one to receive an invitation for such a special occasion in the palace was a lifetime honor.

In contrast, the Holy Eucharist is a banquet prepared by the Jesus, the King of kings. There is no formal invitation nor is it limited only to the selected special people, rather, everyone is welcome to the Supper of the Lord, the holy Mass.

Whereas in the royal banquet, the invited guests were not allowed to dine with the royal family, in the banquet of Jesus, everyone is encouraged to partake of the meal that is, to worthily receive holy Communion with proper disposition. Truly God’s ways are far too different from man’s ways.

On the flip side, someone said that every accomplishment starts with the decision to try and happiness isn’t about getting what you want all the time. It’s about loving what you have and being grateful for it.

“Do not forget that the mercy of God is our shield and strength against injustice, destruction, and oppression,” Pope Francis once tweeted. Focus on what you have instead of what you don’t have and make it a rule of thumb to take time to be someone’s rainbow on their cloudy day. Amen on that folks!

In her Diary no. 86, St. Faustina wrote Jesus’ words, “I do not reward for good results but for the patience and hardships undergone for My sake.”

Pray the Divine Mercy prayer every 3 p.m. Daily recite the Chaplet of Mercy for peace and conversion of sinners.

A big “thank you” to the participants of the Divine Mercy symposium last Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017 at San Vicente Ferrer Catholic Church chapel. May the good Lord bless you and your family with good health and abundance of His grace and mercy.