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Philadelphia - Lower Bucks County, PA

Country: United States
State or province: Pennsylvania

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Nancy Hoyt
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July 9th 2022, Sister Cities Park sidewalk Philadelphia

July 10, 2022


The weather was quite pleasant for Street Evangelization on Saturday July 9th with just a few drops of rain.  In July in Philadelphia if it's less than 90 than that's a win!  Deacon Mark, Chris (5th year in Diaconate formation) and Nancy setup a prayer station a block from the Cathedral of SS Peter and Paul, adjacent to Sister Cities Park.  The team was blessed to meet and pray with many people.  Our teammate Chris, who is doing street evangelization as part of his formation, was exceptionally good at striking up conversations with people passing by.  A nice technique he used was to find commonality with some people's attire, whether they had a tee shirt with something on it, or a hat, etc. and ask a question about it.  This opened up many people to conversation and then it could lead to more talk about faith and prayer, versus just walking on by.  There were many people and intentions, and they are at the bottom of this post.  Please consider praying for them in your own prayers.  Also here are a couple of stories we'd like to share first.

There was a man walking up the sidewalk and as he approached us and our sign he was heading straight for us, not trying to avoid, as some passersby do. He was making a beeline straight over. He told us that we wouldn't believe what he needed to tell us. As he was changing his shirt this morning, the rosary beads that he wore around his neck for the past 7 years broke and all of the beads were strewn across the floor. He spoke of how wearing the beads and the crucifix on them reminded him of how incredibly blessed he is. His name is James.  He spoke of wearing the beads ALL of the time, while bathing, while sleeping, never taking them off. James told us that he cried a bit because of his sadness over breaking the beads and that he castigated himself for being careless when dressing and his regret over it. James had taken another set of brown beads off of his little elephant decor at home and wore them out this morning since he was missing his tried and true rosary. You can imagine how happy he was to be offered a new rosary. He picked a burgundy one donated by the Legion of Mary at Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary Church, Nancy's parish.  He told the team how this type of thing happens to him all of the time, with God always meeting his needs as they come along. He spoke of how he is blessed by God everyday in so many ways and that this wonderful meeting with us with free rosaries to give out, just down the street from where he lived, was yet one more blessing in a lifetime of them. James face-timed his girlfriend on the spot; he had told her earlier this morning of his sadness of his broken beads and was so excited to tell her and show her our team and his new rosary beads. He was thankful for our presence. James' joy and trust in the Lord was infectious and he truly was full of the Holy Spirit. We pray for continued blessings on his life.

A bit later there was a young woman standing at the crosswalk with two children. We did not have an opportunity to speak with her but then the little girl took a fall on the sidewalk.  Mom pulled her close and was hugging her well as the little boy looked on, remarking about a nasty scrape on her knee. With the little family sticking around to handle tears, Chris asked if the little girl might like a blessed medal to make her feel better. Mom agreed and the team gave Lucy and Jack miraculous medals with crucifixes. The mom told Jack "ask about who is on that necklace". We spoke of Jesus who saves us from when we do naughty things on purpose, when we sin, and of Mary who is His mom and how moms are the best. Jack agreed. Lucy perked up and the mom told us about how she and her husband have moved to Philadelphia a couple years ago and they've gone to the Presbyterian church nearby but she would like to go into the Catholic church in the neighborhood, St. Francis De Sales. She spoke of a nice Catholic couple that they were friends with that attend the church there and that anytime she has passed by the priests or people there, they are very friendly. Our team spoke positively of how she is most welcome at any Catholic church. We told her that she could ask the couple what time Mass they attend and tell them that they'd like to visit their church too. We told her of the Catholic Cathedral across the street from us and that it was open and she should consider going in with the kids. We told her how both Pope St. John Paul II and Pope Francis had said Mass there and that the heiress St. Katherine Drexel's body was entombed there, after the Motherhouse closed in Bensalem. We told her of how the windows in our cathedral were placed up high to stave off the risk of firebombs when the cathedral was built as there was significant anti-Catholic sentiment at that time, in the late 1800's. The mom spoke of how her little Jack had always wanted to go into a very pretty church in their old neighborhood. We spoke of how some question church expenditure on art yet there were many who drew close to God thanks to beautiful art and music. The mom agreed and they decided to head off to see the cathedral before going to see the dinosaurs at the Academy of Natural Sciences. We did first pray with Jack and the family and he asked particularly for prayers to score well in baseball and for his friendships.

We also spoke and prayed with the following for their intentions:

Margie - for peace on earth and in Philadelphia; she is worried we are in the end times
Frankie - for perseverance and good grades in anatomy and chemistry, towards his degree as a respiratory therapist
Leonardo - a Mexican immigrant here for a year now, asks for prayers for his health
Joelle and Ariana - for his brother in FL, Roy Henriquez' healing and recovery for his spinal cord injury from a bad auto accident
Calloway - for financial stability, spiritual clarity and for his family
Amy - for her family and to go to Mass
Victor - for safe travels for his family, peace and joy
Maggie - for her aunt Laura's miraculous healing from her cancer; she is 41 and has small children and the cancer is metastatic
James - for joy and peace and continued blessings and faith
Mia and 3 small children - she has moved to Philadelphia from VA, leaving a struggling marriage; she has help from her mother in the area and she prays for wellness, safety and peace
Roger and Kadesia - for peace and hope and freedom from violence and threats to trans people
Tunisia and Robert - for their peace and wellness
Barbara Christian - joyful woman "cheesehead from WI :)" prays for our street evangelization mission and teams and we pray for her health and safety and continued faithfulness to God
Grace and kids - for Jack to score well in his athletics and for his friendship; also for the family to be welcome in the Catholic parish near their home
Willam Howell - for miraculous healing from his addiction, for self control, and for love and home
Denise - for her peace, hope and joy

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