Third grade student Quinn M. has spent the past week walking in the footsteps of Saint Paul in modern-day Greece and Turkey.
After arriving in Athens last week, Quinn and his tour group voyaged to Thessalonica where Saint Paul preached the Gospel to the Jews and then to the Gentiles. This was followed by a blockbuster day following St. Paul as he entered Europe for the first time. Kavala, a city on the coast of the Aegean Sea, used to be called Neapolis during Paul’s time. Quinn’s group drove through Kavala seeing the mosaic of Paul receiving a vision from the Macedonian man who begged him to come across the seas and bring the good news to Macedonia and Greece. The group also walked on the old Roman Road between Kavala and Philippi. It was a highlight for people as they walked on the same stone road upon which Paul walked.
In Istanbul, Quinn visited the Hagia Sophia, the most beautiful and largest church in the world for 1000 years before St. Peter’s was built in Rome. Next, he visited the Church of Irene which means in Greek the “Church of Divine Peace.” This is the oldest church in Istanbul built by Emperor Constantine. This was the church where the 2nd Ecumenical Council of the Church took place.
The tour spent a great day in Ephesus, the city of St. Paul, St. John and where Mary lived. This was also the location of the 3rd Ecumenical Council where bishops declared Mary the Mother of God. The next port of call was the Island of Patmos. It was here where Saint John received the Book of Revelation while in exile. We were delighted to learn that Quinn served at a special Mass on Patmos.
Quinn is now in back in Athens where he will view the Acropolis and the Parthenon and visit Mars Hill. We look forward to hearing more about Quinn’s trip when he returns to school. The children are looking forward to seeing some of his photos and hearing about this trip from a third grader’s perspective.
Information for this post was copied in part from the Travel Blog of Steve Ray at http://www.catholicconvert.com.