Sunday, April 8, 2012

US Distance Runner Alberto Salazar: Medjugorje for me was just a time of returning to the Catholic Church

The spiritual part of your life obviously is very important. You tell the story of making a pilgrimage to Medjugorje, a Bosnian village where some believers say the Virgin Mary appeared to six children in 1981. Explain the importance of the trip for you.

Medjugorje for me was just a time of returning to the Catholic Church and returning to my commitment to Christ. I guess the No. 1 thing Medjugorje did was to illuminate that all my injuries and sicknesses and the fall from running success were again a part of God's plan. I think my running had become so important to me that God at some point just said, "You know what? You're getting too far out there. You're forgetting about me." And I look at my running now just like the heart attack. My running going poorly was a blessing. Because I was just becoming this guy who believed in himself and his running and had no time for God.

While you were there, you write about how your rosary beads changed overnight from silver to gold. Do you think that happened because you believed, or did it happen so you would believe?

I think it was because I believed. The first couple days, we were waiting to see if it would happen. When it didn't, I realized we shouldn't be asking to be shown a miracle in order to believe. It's like the story of St. Thomas, the one apostle who wasn't there when Christ first appeared. He said, "I won't believe it until I can put my finger in the holes in his hand and his side." And the next time Jesus appeared Thomas was there, and he said: "My lord, my God." And Jesus said, "You believed because you saw. Blessed are those who believe without seeing." And so I realized that anyone can believe in miracles you see. We weren't looking for it to happen. But then it did. Read Salazar puts faith over the finishing line

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