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Meet Cheryl (Scottish) and Cameron (Kiwi) Surrey. They are two very ordinary couple. The way they met, however wasn’t so ordinary.

Cheryl and Cameron (then seminarian) met for the first time in a large event in Sydney called the World Youth Day, where Cheryl was engaged and about to be married to someone in about two years. Delighted to meet a soon-to-be priest, she asked Cameron to be at her wedding.

Fast forward a year later and Cheryl is back in New Zealand for another trip in 2009 before her wedding. Cameron takes Cheryl on tours around the city, embodying the great kiwi hospitality. As they spent more time together, Cheryl began to feel something different. They were just friends. In fact, they weren’t attracted to each other, not emotionally, not physically. They were getting to know each other on a friendship/basic level. So Cameron would pick her up and he would see a church and say ‘hey do you want to go in and see Jesus’ or being in the car and ask ‘hey do you want to say the rosary?’

“And my mind is just like (she makes explosion sound and gestures) … what? I didn’t share my faith with my fiancé at the time. He was baptised catholic but we didn’t share our faith in that way,” said Cheryl.

However that experience and time together made such an impression on Cheryl. She was being invited to pray with a seminarian, something she didn’t do with her fiancé. She said it was a very vulnerable thing to do, but for Cheryl it felt like it was a no brainer to accept these invitations… she would pop in the church with him and pray.

They both laughed at the one-meter distance they kept when they remembered sitting and praying away in church.

“Jesus was always being invited into our friendships, into our conversations, so my mind was like ‘oh my gosh how can I share with this guy that I don’t really know well but I can’t share it with a guy I am planning to marry’. It didn’t make any sense”.


To make sense of it all, Cheryl got in touch with a few friends and one of her spiritual directors from overseas to ask them what she is supposed to do. It was clear that she had to tell Cameron how she felt.

That night they were supposed to go out for dinner with friends, and Cheryl decides it’s time (to tell him).

“I said to Cameron, listen I have something really awkward and kind of embarrassing to say to you but I need to say it… I said I am finding myself being attracted to the fact that we pray together, I don’t know what that means, and he was preparing to ask me ‘you just left your fiancé how does that work?

“But his response to me was ‘well I am in the seminary I am going towards priesthood and you’ve got to sort out what ever discernment you’ve got to sort out with your fiancé that’s your business that’s your thing.”

Cameron was very clear and very direct. Shortly after, while stopping at the red traffic lights, Cheryl had a moment where she felt this weight or burden lift off her shoulders, and she knew that she wasn’t meant to marry her fiancé.

But that wasn’t it. There’s more!

Cameron saw that there was another significant thing that made him stop and take note.

“It was the opening mass at World Youth Day,150 000 people, and at the end of it everyone was getting on buses and all the buses were pretty much going down the main road and then splitting off in different directions. And our accommodation was on the main road and every bus was going past that way… Cheryl had been with some friends and then got separated from them and she’s been trying to find people so she was feeling a bit upset and she felt a bit alone, “Cameron said.


Cheryl picked up the conversation from here.

“So I get on the bus, it felt a bit like New York, a busy area… and I get on the bus and feeling sad, sorry for myself, alone [asking] why am I here. I just had this thought which turned into a prayer which was ‘Lord if you want Cameron to be in my life let me see him tonight’. No sooner had I finished that prayer he stepped on the next stop on to my bus, and I was just said: Cameron!”

Cameron continues just casually “oh Cheryl hey what are they chances”.

Cheryl: “I was like what are you doing here, and he was like ‘I am going back to the accommodation’ and am like of course you are,” she laughed.

This little incident got tucked away at the back of Cheryl’s mind. It happened at World Youth Day in 2008, and didn’t really share it with Cameron until that traffic light incident a year later.

Cheryl said that prayer was not romantic, she didn’t have love feelings for Cameron at the time, however she questioned the whole thing. She’s always trusted and believed in God’s providence.

“I am someone who always believes that somethings happen for a reason. Here’s a guy called Cameron I have met, I’ve just fallen in love with New Zealand, here’s a guy from New Zealand, isn’t that strange. Here’s someone I get on with, he studies theology, we have lots in common, he is easy to speak to,” Cheryl said.

She kept asking why this is, and what does this mean. So, when she told Cameron a year later about this memory Cameron took a moments’ pause. Even though he was clear about the direction he was about to take, and that his intentions were to be a priest, he asked that they pray for nine days, to make a decision whether they should pursue this further.

Find out what happened next below!

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  • Writer's pictureMina Amso

I had a fascinating conversation with renowned speaker and author Jason Evert from the Chastity Project this week on my show. We talked about the one thing that we need to have in order to love, form friendships and build intimacy with a partner.

We talked about trust, and the sad reality when it’s being broken. Here’s a part of our conversation, you can watch the entire interview here. Below are Jason's answers.

Jason says without trust, love is impossible.

“Intimacy is impossible, friendship is impossible. Trust is a pre-requisite to love. You can’t give your heart away if you’re not willing to trust.”

Distrust: Is it a hurt from the past or basic instinct?

The feminine genius, the intuition, the instinct. Especially for a woman, it is said that the female brain, you can actually hear sounds that are actually imperceptible to the male brain. We are talking about nuances and inflections within the human voice that are completely imperceptible to the male brain.

I think there is an entire conversation that the male brain can’t hear. Just in terms of sentences, women’s brains I think over billions of years have been able to intuit meaning behind words and ask 'is this trustworthy, there's something in his voice that makes me feel like he is not completely honest', and if those little red flags go up, I think the woman got to look and say ‘okay where is this coming from?’ Is this coming from a hurt in my past?'

And you know when you feel triggered or agitated you need to ask yourself: 'When have I felt this before? Well I think I felt this before when my ex-boyfriend burned me and cheated on me and I caught him with so and so.’

Okay well you might be on to something here, or this might be simply be a regurgitation of something in the past that hasn’t quite been processed and so you need to look at 'hey maybe there’s a little something here that I really need to pay attention to when it comes to this other person. Maybe my intuition is giving me a red flag because to move forward and bury that intuition could be dangerous to me or is this agitation coming up because of something in the past'. That takes a level of discernment to see whether the issue of distrust is really with this person or still lingering from the person in the past.

So how do you know if you if it's something you need addressing?

I like what you said earlier, trust, it takes so long to build, but in the sense takes an instant to destroy. It's almost like if you’re building a house of cards or skyscraper, it might takes five years to build the skyscraper but then with one bomb it is levelled, literally in a minute it’s gone, and so it’s a lot the same with trust.

Especially once its been destroyed, the person who destroys this trust often expects it to be resorted as quickly as it was dismantled, but it doesn’t work that way, I mean its brick by brick. It’s got to be put back together, it’s a process that takes time, a process that you ask yourself, am I willing to trust this person again, and depending on the type of relationship you might be in, let’s say it’s a marriage, there’s kids involved, they’re both willing to work on it, this is going to take a little bit of time. Counseling might be necessary.

And so if you’re wondering should I trust this person in a relationship or before relationship, I would say to make sure not to decide that all by yourself, just going lone ranger, trying to figure it out. Talk to your girlfriends, family members, talk to people whose opinions you respect and admire because a lot of time they might be able to call you out and say ‘hey I think you are kind of over reacting to this whole thing I don’t think he really meant that, he seems like a really good guy’, or 'you’re really blind, wearing rose coloured glasses this guy has some major issues and you keep sweeping him under the rug, thinking you’re just going to fix and rehabilitate this boy. You’re not his mother, you are not his messiah, don’t try and play that role, so a lot of time our friends will be able to call us out, one direction or the other, if we are under reacting or overreacting when it comes to distrust.

So, what happens to our brain with this whole trusting/distrusting of someone?

I think distrust is the survival mechanism [in our brain] because of how central trust it is to a relationship, and when we have gone through emotional trauma and betrayal in the past, you know, our brain is trying to protect us from having to go through that again and so and we are going to be a little hyper-reactive and over sensitive but we need to be careful that our solution is not to be become completely numb to it.

I’ve had girls come say to me ‘I am sexually liberated I can sleep with a guy and not really know him that well and if he doesn’t text me the next day, I am not all heart broken, I am not crying about it. I am an independent woman. I am sexually liberated.'

This to me is not liberation, this is numbness, this is a third-degree burn. Because the first degree burn is painful it hurts a little bit, second degree you have blisters and its red, third degree its charred, its black, the nerve endings are dead, you can poke it with a needle and you wouldn’t feel anything and that is a lot like a heart of someone who’s been burned again and again emotionally they think ‘oh I can handle this, it’s not a big deal’, that’s numbness, that’s not wholeness, that’s not healing, so a lot of time what we do is to protect ourselves, we put our heart in a little bit of a cage.

Nobody is going to get in here, so you might be willing to be vulnerable physically with someone, but you are unwilling to be emotionally vulnerable with the same person, and sometimes that cage cannot turn into a castle, like nobody is getting in here. If I let you in here, I know what you’re going to do, you are going to see me and you’re going to find me, and you are going to reject me and you are going to betray me, and eventually if those stones stay up long enough the castle becomes a coffin, and you become literally unlovable not because you’re not lovely but because you refuse to allow yourself to be loved out of fear of being betrayed and that is hell. I mean that is despair, the unwillingness to receive love.

It’s almost as if you are living a bit of hell on earth, this complete rejection of the willingness to receive love, and that’s not how God wants for us, and its scary.And that’s why I recommend if you’ve been through serious form of betrayal or in fidelity or whatever, find a good counsellor you can talk to, and there’s no shame. I know in some cultures I know it’s like 'oh no if you go to counselling this means you have broken mental health issues, you are crazy'.

You get over these dumb cultural stereotypes.

I mean if you have a broken leg, you go to a physical doctor, if you have a broken heart, you go to a counsellor, a psychologist, and be able to work through those things so you can be willing not only to give love, but also to receive it.

Jason Evert is a Chastity author and speaker, has eight children and resides in the US.

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All young people go through the same thing. They want love and don’t know how to find it.

That’s what International Catholic speaker and author of several books Jason Evert told me this week in our interview. He says there’s confusion between love and lust, and sometimes people struggle with finding love because of lack of role modelling from parents and peers.

Do we need to reclaim a culture of dating? Some people think dating is a problem. The problem is that nobody knows how to date, according to Evert.

He says guys don’t see their parents date because parents have forgotten how to date in the first place.

He wrote a book recently about how to date called: How to Find Your Soul Mate Without Losing Your Soul.

“[Men] don’t have a clue. I mean God bless them but really they have no idea what they’re doing, they want to use apps and swipe themselves in and out of relationships but that’s not what a woman wants.”

A woman wants a guy with ‘intentionality and clarity’ and be asked out face to face.

A woman wants a guy with ‘intentionality and clarity’ and be asked out face to face.

He speaks about his latest book: How to Find Your Soul Mate Without Losing Your Soul.

The women have pre-conceived hopes and expectations of what a guy wouldn’t know, but he says not in a place where they can communicate that to the guys.

Evert went online to100k women who follow him and asked them about how they like to be asked out on a date, how to break up without ghosting, what they like guys to do on a date, where to go etc. Women submitted 30k words of feedback within hours and gave Evert an insight into what they want guys to do before, during and after a date, and how they like to be handled. So Evert put all this in the book.

“Just to give guys the real specifics of courtship, when to date, who to date, why to date, how to date, and helping them discern they’re making the right choice, of the right potential.”

Clueless Guys? The path of least resistance?

No woman wants to date a guy who seem clueless. But the reality is cluelessness around relationships and what guys want is evident. If a guy doesn’t know what he wants, how can he lead a relationship? Evert believes advances in technology has resulted in guys taking the path of least resistance. He remembers guys in high school finding out about dating apps, and being excited about how awesome these dating apps are.

“All you need to do is swipe in and out of things and there’s no risk of rejection but what they are missing out on, as what a woman told me, is that she said ‘the easier is to ask out a lady out the easier for a lady to say no’”. If there is no risk, or skin in the game, there’s no gain.

If there is no risk, or skin in the game, there’s no gain.

To ask a girl in broad daylight shows confidence and interest in her that you are willing to risk rejection. But because technology guys can choose the option least resistance and text or communicate on social media applications.

Another big issue, Evert says is porn. Pornography feminizes men, and that’s a problem. They don’t pursue what’s arduous or difficult, but pleasurable. They are no longer initiating love, but lust. Sometimes even nothing, out of fear of rejection or commitment.

He says there was a big study he read, where they asked colleague students whether they preferred a hook up or traditional romantic relationship. The majority responded with the latter, but they were twice as likely to hookup. As if there’s a desire to something but didn’t know how to pursue, he says.

I posed an interesting question about whether being on the contraceptive pill has anything to do with the dating crisis that is happening in society?

He believes it is the root cause of bad dating. But how can that be?

He says planned parenthood, the biggest abortion provider in America, had a study they published explaining the hookup culture, through the lens of evolutionary biology.

“They said in any particular species, the male and female have a different productive rate, and they define that by how long it takes for them to complete a reproductive venture. For a man it can be five minutes, that is as much you need to invest in order to procure off spring. For a female, it’s not five minutes. It is life time. Not just the nine months of gestation, lactation, child rearing [but more like a lifetime], that is a gigantic investment.”

As a result, evolution biologists say that the sex with the longest reproductive rate is a riskier reproductive choice. If a female is bonding to a man who is not going to be a faithful person, she can make a poor decision

“But what would happen if you took an entire sex, and gave women a male reproductive rate of five minutes and all of the sudden, the women wouldn’t need to be as choosy when it comes to choosing a spouse. They can be less selective, because ‘hey well there’s no risk of pregnancy so what’s wrong with little hookups and having friends with benefits’”, he said.

He says Nobody is being choosey when it comes to potential mate and sex becomes the getaway to recreation not procreation, and globally there’s a decline in sexual morality.

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