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Mr. Smith-Jones Goes To Washington

GUEST COLUMN

By Dred Scott | January 2005
Dred Scott (a pseudonym) writes from Washington, D.C.

It was a perfect summer day when Fred Smith-Jones’s family left the Midwest for a vacation in the nation’s capital.

Fred and his wife, Joyce, both middle-class suburbanites, were excited and had spent several days designing an itinerary. Their two adolescent children — Ashlee and Zodiac — were likewise filled with wonder regarding their first-ever trip east of the Ohio River.

After arriving at the Reagan Airport and checking into their hotel, the family quickly hit the streets. Tour buses took them to the U.S. Capitol, the White House, and Union Station. The family photographed every monument and statue.

On the third morning, the Smith-Joneses, who are Catholic, visited the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception.

They toured North America’s largest church in awe. Fred used his camcorder to videotape everything, including the reconciliation chapel where dozens of people waited in line for the Shrine’s two confessionals.

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