We are social creatures by nature: receiving an invitation is always flattering. it says that the sender thought that your presence was important for the occasion. It goes straight to the ego: “Oh, you want ME!”
An invitation can come in many forms: choosing up sides for a pick-up basketball game, a text message or phone call to meet for lunch. They can be spontaneous or they can be planned well in advance. For bigger life celebrations, like birthdays and weddings, the invites are more colorful or artful, and often delivered by the mail carrier. Whatever the occasion, invitations are usually framed to entice you to accept.
Certainly when the Vatican sends an invitation, they do it in style. So, when you receive an ornately hand-addressed enveloped, postmarked Citta del Vaticano, with a stamp commemorating Franz Joseph Haydn, this does capture the attention. Then, as the enclosed letter evokes the Vatican history back to Pope Julius II and Palestrina and 1513, well, it becomes even more compelling. But, the clincher? The charming sentence, “Therefore, I think it would be nice to celebrate our anniversaries together.”
And so, this journey began, with a humble and eloquent note from the “Chapel Master” at St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome.