If anything, this trip has really taught me how far I’ve strayed.
I went to Catholic school since preschool and was very religious as a kid, like was praying novenas at eight years old. Then going to college, I would still go to church occasionally. It always felt like home. If I was homesick, I would go to Mass. I thought I was Catholic, but I wasn’t really Catholic.
It feels like home here.
I found out about Medjugorje through my mom. We were supposed to come last year but couldn’t. My mom prayed over which daughter to take. She was like, “Katie, I’m supposed to take you.”
And I was like, “It sounds like a lot, but okay, I guess. If that’s the Will, then that’s the Will.”
I was fully ready– actually no. I’ve never been fully ready to come because I was like, “I don’t actually believe we’re gonna make it there.” Until we set foot here, I was like, “I don’t know if we’re gonna make it.”
I was nervous to come because I was nervous for what it would do for me. Which, it’s done so much in such a short amount of time. And now I’m nervous to leave because I don’t really want to go back to reality. It’s so easy here. This second half of the trip, that’s what I’ve been praying for, peace to go back home. For me at least, it’s so easy to get wrapped up in the B.S. of everyday life.
My husband is Catholic, but he’s not practicing. I feel like, being able to talk about stuff like this is a huge part of my life. That’s what’s been so great here. Everyone’s on the same page about stuff. And he will listen to me, but he just doesn’t get it, and he’s not willing or able or ready to change yet. So I’m just nervous to go back and not have this community here to talk to people. And honestly, I think it bothers and affects me more than I realized. At least I’ll have my mom.
I thought it was really special that my mom didn’t know who to take and prayed and prayed and prayed. Then it was me.
When we went up Apparition Hill and we were kneeling in front of Mary, she went before me because I was taking pictures. So I went and kneeled down next to her and held her hand, and we just prayed together. And I was like, “You’re my two mothers.”
I could see it in my mind this morning at Mass, me bringing my daughter– which I don’t even have a daughter– here with my mom. It’ll be three generations.
I fully intend on coming back every year as long as I am able to. At least once a year.