The Academy of Saint Matthias the Apostle
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Saint Matthias Students Visit the Pope


On Thursday, September 24, 2015 a group of 8th grade students from The Academy of Saint Matthias the Apostle were in attendance as Pope Francis entered Nunciature in Washington, DC.  The students were selected from the Catholic students in the 8th grade.   The Catholic School students were also joined by Confirmation class students from the Faith Formation program at Saint Matthias Apostle Parish.   The process to be a part of this event, included many levels of security and clearance, as students were granted up-close and personal time with the Holy Father.
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“The most meaningful part of today was getting to see the Pope in person” said Lauren Ntungwe “One thing I’ll remember is that I got to do this with my 8th grade class. I will try to walk with  Francis beyond today by helping others.”  Lauren was able to meet with the Principal from Bishop McNamara High School before the event, one of her top choices for next year.
“The Pope took the time to wave at us. I was also able to see the Cardinal up-close. I will try to walk with Francis by helping others, and praying more,” said Nicole Taylor.  Nicole has attended Saint Matthias since kindergarten.

“People told us that they saw us one TV!” Afoma Okpalanaka shared.  “I will try to walk with Francis beyond today by praying for Pope Francis.”

“The most meaningful part today was when I came face to face with Pope Francis” said Simon Yoseph.  Simon was also impressed to see Cardinal Wuerl again, after assisting him at Mass before.


The feeling of family and community was alive throughout the day.  “Today, we spent time together.  I found this very special because we’re leaving for high school so soon,” said Debbie Barahona.  Students took a picture together of their security bracelets, showing both their unity and diversity.


“The most meaningful part of today was being so close to the leader of the church. One thing that I will always remember is the excitement I felt. I will try to walk with Francis beyond today by taking care of the environment” said Olivia Hawkins.  Olivia has been at Saint Matthias the past decade.


Alana Boafo hopes to keep connected to the Pope beyond today.  “The most meaningful part of the day is when the Pope Francis arrived. I will try to walk with Francis beyond today by watching what he is doing in US and in Rome.”


Jason Kalshoven also commented on the excitement over the media coverage of this event “it means this was a big deal, and we were a part of it!”


Students were thankful for this opportunity, and the staff and volunteers that made today possible.


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