Virtual visit to the Sistine Chapel

Villanova University professor Paul Wilson checks focus and exposure while photographing a 360-degree virtual reality tour of St. Peter’s Basilica. (CNS/Paul Haring)

VATICAN CITY — You have to check this out.

The virtual tour of the Sistine Chapel, a joint project of Villanova University and the Vatican, has been launched here on the Vatican Web site.

We’ve written about the university’s filming team, who have already assembled a virtual tour of the Basilica of St. John Lateran are working on one for St. Peter’s Basilica.

The Sistine Chapel is stunning, in floor-to-ceiling detail. You can crawl up and down Michelangelo’s frescoes with the mouse — just don’t spin it too quickly or you’ll get dizzy.

Barefoot for a cause

On April 8 you may see more people going barefoot than usual. That’s because the shoe company TOMS is promoting “One Day Without Shoes” to spread awareness about the impact a pair of shoes can have on a child’s life. The company, which donates a pair of shoes to a child in need for each pair purchased, hopes to spread awareness of  children worldwide going without shoes. These children not only get cuts and infections, but are also prevented from going to school.

At least two Catholic schools are participating in the barefoot campaign — Gonzaga University in Spokane, Wash., and Regis Jesuit High School in Aurora, Colo.

In the fall, Blake Mycoskie, founder of TOMS, spoke at the campus of St. Mary’s University in San Antonio as a guest lecturer for the university’s lecture series on “the new economic landscape and what it teaches about social responsibility.”

Today’s Catholic, San Antonio’s archdiocesan newspaper, covered the event and described the guest lecturer as “St. Francis of Assisi and Elvis Presley rolled into one.”  The 33-year-old entrepreneur told the college students that he used to think you could either be in ministry or business. After starting his own company he realized it doesn’t have to be “either/or. It can be a little bit of both.”