My Medjugorje trip, Day 1 – Peaceful culture shock.

This is my personal experience of, and witness to Medjugorje. I would like you to share this post to draw more attention to the best place on earth, so that others may have the opportunity to fall in love with Medugorje, Mother Mary, and ultimately Her beloved Son Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.

Day 1…

Travelling on my own with 2 small kids to Medjugorje seemed rather daunting. Ok I was terrified! Thank God my mum offered to come and lend a hand! The journey from London Gatwick was surprisingly smooth. The 2 1/2 hour flight went quickly and the 2 1/2 hour coach trip with the kids was fine (with the help of my portable DVD player). So far so good.

We are staying with Jacov Colo, the youngest of the 6 visionaries. He was there to welcome our group. He seems like a nice chap! very down to earth with a good sense of humour – an old softy really! He was 9 years old at the start of the apparitions in 1981. He lost his mother at 11 and his father at 13. He was then raised by his uncle. He had his last daily apparition on september 12th 1998. Since then he sees Our Lady once a year on Christmas day.

Jacov in the early years.

Jacov today.

Our room is basic but comfortable, and the food is great! Everyone here is very friendly and genuinely kind and helpful. They want to make our time here happy one.

This evening mum had the kids and it was cool enough for me to climb mount Podbrdo. I was on my own, but surrounded by many other small groups of pilgrims quietly praying the rosary, listening to the story of Medjugorje, or just silently making their way up the mountain. It is so peaceful here. My goodness it is so peaceful here. I am finding this peace to be a little difficult to get used to. It has been 8 years since my last trip, and the adjustment from the secular environment of the UK is proving to be a bit of a culture shock. It just goes to show how different life is when you are surrounded by people who believe in God, and when you are surrounded by people who don’t.

The ‘guard’ I put up in my normal daily life isn’t needed here. Here there is no fight.  I am free to be overtly catholic and there is no one trying to oppose or oppress me. Instead every where I look there are people praying quietly. Young, old, black, white, fat thin, first timers and returnees.

Some gently coming to terms with rediscovering their faith, others walking around with big smiles and eyes like saucers because it has suddenly dawned on them that God does exist! Others have come for a specific intention, to pray for a loved one – living or dead.

Some are over coming addictions, some are discerning the priesthood, some are praying to heal their marriages. Others like me, are trying to teach their children that there is something more. Something the culture in the UK doesn’t offer. Something they can take with them back home and remember when they are faced with difficult decisions later in their lives.

I am so happy to be back here! I pray this trip is a success, and I can’t wait to tell you all about it!