Local Catholics feel renewed energy after visit from Pope Francis

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) – Catholics from the Diocese of Harrisburg say even though they’re physically tired from their trip to Philadelphia to see Pope Francis, they’re coming back with a new spiritual energy.

“It was amazing,” Cindy Lupi said. “I’m getting goosebumps right now. It was like this calmness went over you. Tears obviously – I’m starting to tear up right now.”

Pope Francis passed by Lupi and the group she traveled with on a bus from the diocese.

“He’s the closest person to God and Jesus you can get to,” Lupi told ABC 27, “and you’re right there with him.”

Now that Lupi is back at her home in Cumberland County, she’s looking to put Pope Francis’ message into action.

“He talked about family, he talked about love,” Lupi said as she recalled the pope’s words to the crowds in Philadelphia. “His homily – he talked about small gestures that are so important. And I think it really brings that back to you, to think, ‘Wow, these things really are important and you really need to think about those.’ ”

Lupi isn’t the only one with renewed Catholic energy.

“I noticed myself, this past week and the weekend, we had a real upsurge of Mass attendance, people going to confession,” Rev. Fr. John Trigilio, PhD, ThD of Our Lady of Good Counsel in Marysville said.

Trigilio calls this the “most positive papal visit in recent U.S. history.” He says that’s partially because of the pope’s humble demeanor, but also because of his relatable emphasis on family.

“Well, the church is a family, too,” he said. “And that’s what people really felt, that he wasn’t just the head of a religion, he was the head of a family. And I think people in my parish had that same context, that we’re a family of faith.”


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