Jason Kelly '95
As Father Bob Simon ’96M.A. remembers it, around age 5 he began to discern two distinct but equally contemplative callings: the priesthood and playing with Legos. They stuck.
When Pope Paul VI died in August 1978, followed by the elevation and sudden death of John Paul I, then the election of John Paul II, all within about two months, the 13-year-old Simon followed the tectonic Church news. He’s of Polish ancestry, so when Karol Wojtyla, the former archbishop of Krakow, became Pope John Paul II, the event carried particular significance. To commemorate that momentous period, Simon built his first Lego Vatican.
In his memory, it was a structure of soaring grandeur. A model made of toy blocks, maybe, but one Michelangelo himself might bless with a kiss of his fingertips. “My sister showed me pictures a few years ago,” Simon confesses with a laugh on the phone from the Moscow, Pennsylvania, parish where he serves as pastor. “It wasn’t as epic as I remembered it.”
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