Hi friends from Northern Ireland!
The weather is colder, there is some rain and the accents are different! I even replied to girl in a coffee shop in Croatian yesterday so it seems my brain hasn’t fully caught up with my body (a welcome turn of events!!
Our 3 months in Medjugorje got off to a rocky start. Due to some previous articles I wrote relating to the difficulty in Medjugorje for LGBT Catholics some locals were afraid!
Somebody called the secret police and I was investigated and asked to leave as Interpol in Holland sifted through my blog! In a funny irony my older brother used to work there! How funny had he been asked to read my blog as a part of his job!
In prayer Our Lady told us to stay. We had done nothing wrong and obviously the police saw that as we never heard from them again!
The abuse continued as the priest on the ground began to preach about us! We were targeted as ‘fake missionaries’, as ‘criminals’ and as ‘beggars’. It was preached that we were full of pride and that we were following demons for good measure…
And so as things escalated we went to the bishop and made an official complaint.
All 3 of us have come from ordinary and simple families and our only crime was teaching about God’s love and mercy for Gay people!
And so the abusive preaching quickly stopped and was replaced by lies and gossip that we had reported the priest for some sort of sexual abuse!!
‘Enemies of the Church’ we were called along with other names like ‘sodomites’ as some locals seen us as messengers of Satan who came to Medjugorje to destroy a priest!
We soon discovered that a lot of people were not concerned with the truth or indeed with helping LGBT people find Jesus!
And so we increased our prayer life! We went to 3 masses every day, more adoration and more confession and ironically those people attacking us could only be rarely seen at these events!
Gospa looked after us and doors opened nonetheless and providence never let us down!
We must have spoken to hundreds of people who were deeply touched by our testimonies and who too had LGBT sons and daughters and were worried!
We also met dozens of very supportive priests in confession and out and they are praying for us!
And so we thank Our Lady! Despite these difficulties, Medjugorje is a very special place and is for everybody, wherever they are on their journey with God!
Our prayer is that God’s love be preached to the LGBT community and that those Catholics and even priests who are suffering in this area have the simplicity and the courage to talk about it and deal with it and become lights of hope to others and to their colleagues.
It seems that in these times that this is an issue plaguing the church from both inside and outside and must be addressed and handled pastoraly and practically and spirituality!
So onwards and upwards! If you would like to help us or to hear our story please get in contact! We would love to hear from you!
Blessings to all