A lesson by an Anglican minister

In Medjugorje I found Mary - the renewal of my church began with Her. He begs Catholics .. recite the Rosary: through Mary you can renew the world

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Apart from the many Catholics who visit Medjugorje to venerate the Queen of Peace, of late there have also been an increasing number of non-Catholic Christians who visit Medjugorje to pray to Our Lady with trust and to ask for Her motherly intercession before God. A recent visit was paid by Anglican minister, Robert Llewelyn. Despite his age, he is spritely, and deeply spiritual. Peace and joy irradiate from his every word.

Q. Would you like to start by telling us something about yourself?

I was born a long time ago, in 1909, but thanks to God I’m still fit. When I was young I was very interested in mathematics and I studied at Cambridge, where I was born. I worked for a while in the English schools, and then in India for 25 years. The natural sciences interested me, but at the same time I was very attached to my Christian faith. I studied Anglican theology privately and in 1938 became a minister. I was chaplain for 13 years in the sanctuary of St. Juliana.

When I hear about churches and other places of prayer being destroyed, and about this ethnic cleaning, it brings back to mind those long decades and centuries of fighting between the Anglicans and Catholics. Then too, a great number of Catholic churches and convents were destroyed, and many people were killed in our ethnic cleansing. You can’t imagine how the Catholic Church and the priests were hated. The Catholic priests were persecuted harshly, but Our Lady, the Mother of Jesus, was hated and attacked violently. Once, a statue of Her was tied by a rope to a horse and it was dragged around the streets until it broke to bits. So even today in interconfessional meetings and talks, there is still a lot of difficulty when the question concerning Our Lady arises.

Q. How many Anglicans are there, and how many go to church?

There are 40 million of us. Only a small percentage are church goers. Something has to be done if we want the people to return to God - everyone needs Him.

Q. What do you think can be done?

This is the third time I’ve come to Medjugorje, even though I’m 83 years old. For me, Medj. is simply a place of prayer. For example, I can pray much better here than in London. Experience tells me that we Anglicans have to bring Mary back to our spiritual area and give Her the place She is worthy of. She is our Mother, and we are truly poor if we do not permit Her to be with us. I think this is where the beginning of our spiritual renewal lies, and with this in mind I started up a prayer community. We pray the Rosary together. There certainly aren’t many of these groups. Perhaps it’s the only one in our Church, it is very close to Catholic heritage and prayer. I talk to my faithful about Mary and I suggest they pray to Her.

What Our Lady says here in Medjugorje is what Jesus says, it’s what Jesus says is the will of God. Here, in your land, Mary is inspiration. There is a real Christian atmosphere in church, and in many of your families true devotion to Mary shines out and in the visionaries, joy, peace and simplicity.

This change came about because of my new filial relationship with Mary our Mother, and it started in Medjugorje. I live in the hope that if this happened to me, it can also happen to others. The renewal is needed by all.

Q. Is there something else you'd like to say about the Rosary?

The Rosary is a prayer of meditation, it brings us closer to Jesus. Since Mary is in the beginning and the end of this prayer, what else could happen to me if not learn to love Mary and be convinced that we Anglicans have to find place in our prayer for Her too? She is our Mother. Without Her we are nothing but poor orphans.

Because of my love of the Rosary, I have been able to urge Catholics at meetings to pray it. I know many of your faithful have forgotten it or recite it superficially.

Q. Is there anything else you would like to say?

Let Mary instruct you. The world looks at you, do not tire! Through Mary you can renew the world and you will be helping us Anglicans to accept Her too, and we will be brothers! Since I met you I pray for you all, for the monks, the visionaries and the entire parish. Remain one in spirit, like Mary wants. That is the only way you will be able to present His luminous face to the world, and show the way to God. You pray for us too so we will know how to jump over the obstacles and see each other as brothers and sisters as soon as possible. May God, through the intercession of Mary, protect you and watch over you in these difficult times. and may He grant you peace through the intercession of the Queen of Peace.

(from Nasa Ognjista - Dec. 1992)


For God to live in your hearts, you must love.