PHILADELPHIA — Greetings from the City of Fatherly Love.

Pope Francis arrived in Philadelphia today and the papal party has started. Thousands streamed to the blocks around the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul as Pope Francis celebrated Mass inside the historic church. Outside, the masses celebrated the Holy Father’s historic visit, watching the service on large screens placed throughout the area.

The air was rich with the smells of food trucks offering an amazing diversity of choices and the voices of Francis and a choir that sounded truly angelic. It was like Mardi Gras in New Orleans, minus the booze and the you-know-whats. It was as joyful a crowd as I have ever seen, and I’ve been to Mardi Gras  in New Orleans.

This is better, and it’s just getting started.