For years I’ve prayed for a miracle, a sign that God was still with me. Until recently, my faith was struggling. I couldn’t find the strength to return to the Church. But, I did and that’s when I began blogging via The Gay Catholic.
Earlier this month, I was surfing the web for ideas for a new blog post when I came across articles that were discussing Pope Francis’ upcoming visit to the United States. Out of curiosity, I began searching for his itinerary, hoping that he’d be near me. Then an old White House press release caught my eye.
The President and the First Lady will welcome His Holiness Pope Francis to the White House on Wednesday, September 23. During the visit, the President and the Pope will continue the dialogue, which they began during the President’s visit to the Vatican in March 2014, on their shared values and commitments on a wide range of issues, including caring for the marginalized and the poor; advancing economic opportunity for all; serving as good stewards of the environment; protecting religious minorities and promoting religious freedom around the world; and welcoming and integrating immigrants and refugees into our communities. The President looks forward to continuing this conversation with the Holy Father during his first visit to the United States as Pope.
When I read this, I immediately thought to myself, “I want to be there to witness this.”
Why? Because the two governing bodies I love and believe in are coming together. Both of which have expressed acceptance and support of the LGBT+ community.
I found a contact form on the White House website and decided to send a message to President Obama. My message was personal and expressed my thoughts above. I clicked send, and moved on.
On Thursday, August 13, a miracle happened. While I was covering SigEp’s 54th Grand Chapter Conclave, I received a phone call from a blocked number. Thinking it was work related, I answered the phone saying, “This is Aaron.”
On the other end a gentlemen responded saying he was from the White House Office of Presidential Correspondence. He told me that the President had received my message and was moved by it. Then, he told me the good news …
The President and First Lady would like to invite you and one guest to join us for Pope Francis’ visit to the White House.
Minutes later, I hung up my phone. I began crying in my hotel room. I called my mom and told her the news. I sat there thinking to myself, “Look how far you’ve come, Aaron.”
Since then I’ve received two emails from the White House. One from the corespondent regarding the event. And the other, from the President.
Thank you to everyone for the love and support. I cannot wait until I get to share photos and updates from the event on September 23.
Remember, miracles do happen, and prayers do get answered.