Day X. Friday, Week I.
"By my life, I do not wish the sinner to die, says the Lord, but to turn
to me and live" (Communion Antiphon for today - Ez 33:11).
Santi Dodici Apostoli. The Church of the Twelve Apostles is my parish
church, erected by Julius I (337-352) over the barracks of ancient Rome's
firemen and entrusted since 1463 to the Conventual Franciscans (St.
Maximilian Kolbe lived here). It is a good symbol for we, the Church, in
that it has survived floods (esp. 1598), earthquakes (esp. 1348), fires
(esp. 1872), plagues, famines, and wars. Traditionally, this is the place
where the Romans choose their candidates for priesthood (Rite of
Election). Restored several times, it is stunning. So much so, I couldn't
get a good picture of it. Instead, I went down into the confessio, in the
style of the catacombs, where, as the signs indicate, the earthly remains
of Saints Philip and James the Less have been interred since 1 May 565.
Note the depiction of Jesus as the Good Shepherd, the earliest icon of our
Lord. The sarcophagus depicts the Lord flanked by Philip and James and the
miracle of the Multiplication of the Loaves. Also in the confessio are
remains of unnamed martyrs, which were moved here from the catacombs for