About a year ago I met a young girl in Medjugorje with Seamus. We told her our stories and the general lack of help, love and support from the church.

Her response was sort of shocking and yet excludung her bad language, she had a point’

“F##k the Church, I have lots of gay friends and I know Our Lady loves them”

And yet her response was also sad. Sad that the Church and Our Lady were mentioned like opposing sides of a football match!

Yesterday’s readings at mass mentioned that nothing can separate us from the love of God! No suffering or not even death itself!

And yet when it comes to the gay community and many other communities it would seem that the Church has done just that!

False teachings put an unhealthy fear of God into people, many priests sadly abused their positions of authority and crippled people with fear and guilt. Others abused children and worse still the cover-ups which added pain on pain.

Many women who got pregnant before getting married were shamed and sent away and people experiencing same sex attraction were shamed, rejected and many killed themselves.

In light of these facts one could see how the young girl could say “f##k the Church” because these actions do not represent what and who the Church really is!

When we meet good priests and loving members of the Church we see that the Church is not so much the institution but rather the people!

We see that the Church is called to be a light of love, healing, hope and mercy and that she has been betrayed from the inside by many who have abused their positions and put human interpretations on the teachings of Jesus for their own gain!

And so I finish by saying to that young girl

“don’t say ‘f##k the Church” but rather rise up and let’s all say

“Heal the Church”

May the humble be exalted and the exalted humbled and may the impostors be cleared out of Our Church and she be restored to the light of mercy, healing and hope to the poor and the broken of this world.

May all those who have been wounded by members of the Church receive healing and experience the love of Jesus which goes beyond all human beings.

Bless you all