Not a standard trip

Not a standard trip
Posted on 27 April 2024

I found the usual sitting at the exposition tiring, but this time it was like a mystical encounter with Jesus, an experience I didn’t even manage to share with the other participants of the trip. It was a real meeting with a friend.

My problem was my lack of empathy when talking to others. Usually I would have prepared a response before someone finished speaking. But this time, for the first time, I had an open mind and heart to listen, to empathise with the problems of others. Each testimony of the participants exposed my imperfection, my mistakes. God let me have the experience in that brief moment of adoration in front of the Blessed Sacrament, which completely changed the way I looked at the Quest in Korbielów.

I was able to share with other men my suffering from feeling that my masculinity had been buried by being preoccupied with raising children, looking after the house and swapping responsibilities with my wife. I know I tried to convince myself that everything was fine, but there was suffering behind my mask. The mask was like a steel mask on my face, exposed to the sun. The longer I kept saying that I was okay with this change, the more the burn hurt. Now that mask had been pulled off and I felt immense relief. Jesus gave me the courage to tell my private story of our marriage, and I was helped by understanding the plot of the film about St Joseph, because I have a lot in common with him and I am able to feel at least a little what he felt when he received the pregnant Mary. Korbielów – it was a real battle, moments of no-holds-barred driving, it was bloody, there were tears! Did it hurt? Yes, but the battle was won and the pain turned into joy. I travelled with one friend and came back richer in 13 more friends. I gave all my wounds to Jesus because He strengthens me, even when I fall He lifts me up. I put all my hope in the Lord, He bent over me and listened to my cry. He brought me out of the pit of destruction and out of the miry clay of sin and set my feet on the rock and strengthened my steps to be a good father, husband and friend.

We returned home motivated to do better, we set ourselves goals to achieve. I thought I would wait a few days to digest all that had happened there but when I got home, pulled off my white Quest t-shirt, ‘my new white armour’, and put it on the back of the chair, my cat immediately puked on it, and he had never done that before. Was it a coincidence? I don’t want to be a prophet here, but without waiting 72 hours, I contacted three friends of mine to talk and convince them to join the ‘light side of the Force’. It may sound strange, but even the cat made me realise that sometimes the world tries to muddy us and you have to act, you can’t wait…