May the Lord fill you and all who you love with his peace.
At the end of the week of the mission in Wigan a man told me a beautiful story. He had been to confession for the first time in 40 years and he had a deep experience of Gods love. After the mission he went into his local pub and was talking to one of his friends and telling him his experience, he gave him a prayer card and went off to speak to someone else. Ten minutes later he returned, the man had read the prayer card and tears were running down his cheeks, he then said that he wanted to know how to join the Church. It was inspiring for me to hear how quickly this man had begun to spread the blessing he himself had received. God wants to use all of us to bring his light and love to others in all places.
I spent a few days in York, a place I've always loved and where I've often felt very close to God. I got speaking to a priest in one of the Parishes and he asked me if I would like to come and speak to a group of people who were joining the Church. It was a very blessed talk and afterwards a man came up to me and told me his story. A couple of years ago someone had given a copy of my book (Gangland to promised land) to his wife. At first she didn't read it and put it down somewhere in the house. A few months later she saw me on television (EWTN) telling my life story. Then she picked up the book to read it and was very moved by it. She gave it to her husband (who wasn't a Catholic) to read, and God really spoke to him through it. He decided to become a Catholic and was doing the RCIA course where I turned up to speak. Only God could have arranged this run of events, it's a source of great peace to know he is in control of every situation when we hand over our lives to him.
Next I headed to Amsterdam to speak at an event arranged for young people. At the hotel I was staying I met a man from Limerick in Ireland. I told him a bit of my story and what I did, then gave him a copy of my book. Afterwards he told me he told me he was inspired to hear of an Englishman who loved the Catholic faith and that he was going to take his faith more seriously from that moment on.
At the event for young people, I met a woman called Stephanie who had arranged for me to come and speak to the young people. She was on fire for God, and in a country (Holland) where there seems to be a lot of confusion in the Church, She showed me once again that anyone who truly gives their life over to God and spreads his love and truth will make an immense difference. I thank God for people like her because the harvest is rich but the labourers are few.
Mother Teresa said "If you give young people the truth they have the chance to choose the truth". I have always seen that people, young and old, are thirsty for the truth and recognise it when they hear it.
Just to say that you are all in my prayers and please pray for me because I will be doing a lot a talks in schools over the next couple of weeks.
God bless you all in his deep love