I just graduated college. I double majored in theology and interdisciplinary studies and minored in communications history and Spanish – which is a lot. Starting in June, I’m going to be a youth minister at St. Francis of Assisi, which is a parish outside of Cleveland.

My family isn’t Croatian, but my adopted family is. I’ve grown up around it, knowing about Our Lady of Medjugorje, and I’ve always wanted to come so as soon as they said, “We’re going to Medjugorje.” I knew I had to come on the trip.

Growing up, we had the faith in the house. My mom works at a parish. My dad is a deacon. I’m going to be a youth minister. So the faith was super present in the house, but we never prayed the Rosary as a family or had a strong devotion to Mary as a family. 

Last summer, I was a summer missionary at Camp Covecrest in Georgia which is a Life Teen Summer Camp. And one of my friends came up to me and said, “I think Mary’s stalking me.” I was like, “That’s so weird but okay.” 

We continued this conversation throughout the year, after my mission was over, and she would just send me pictures of Mary that she would find. And then it was like, well, now Mary’s following me. 

I was reading Mirjana’s book, and she talks about her 2nd of the month apparitions. My mom’s birthday is December 2nd and my best friend’s birthday is May 2nd and my birthday is March 2nd. So there’s things that Mary has come and said on my birthday. And toward the end of the book, it says, “On March 2nd 1997, I was here. And it was one of the first apparitions I did at the Blue Cross. And this is what Mary said.”

My birth date – like actual birth date – is March 2nd, 1997. It was just this thing that Mary was saying to me too. The other night when I went there, I was just overcome with emotion to know that we have a relentless Father that pursues us, but there’s also this relentless Mother that pursues us all the way as well. 

Our Lady’s message to Mirjana on March 2nd 1997: “Dear children, pray for your brothers who haven’t experienced the love of the Father, for those whose only importance is life on earth. Open your hearts towards them and see in them my Son, who loves them. Be my light and illuminate all souls where darkness reigns. Thank you for having responded to my call.”