Yes, I will admit I was nervous. Spending three days with 8th graders on a bus was not high on my list of things to I wanted to do before I died and it didn't start off well. After getting up early and carefully - carefully packing, I went downstairs to walk over to the parking lot (timing it so that I would get there just in a nick of time) and JUST as the door to the rectory shut behind me I realized I had forgotten my keys.
There was not a lot of time before the bus was to take off and I tried calling Fr. P on my cell but of course he was (I choose to believe) in the shower (and not still asleep) and so I had to leave a message begging him to be home when we got back so that I could get into the house.
Despite my apprehensions it was a good trip and our kids were very good for eighth graders. The class was divided into groups and assigned a chaperon. My share was 8 girls.
But they were outstandingly good. As a matter of fact I am proud to say that they caught the attention of a lady at the Vietnam Memorial and she stopped to speak with me.
My favorite part of the trip was the stop at the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception. We had Mass there and the kids knew there Latin responses very well. I was proud to be their pastor.
When I was a kid we did not go to Washington. We went to Philadelphia. My parents took me to D. C. however and I had great memories of walking around and seeing the Washington Monument, the White House, the Capitol Building (in which we say John Glenn.) So toward the end of the second day it made me wonder what these kids were finding memorable.