Father Rob Galea stops by the show to discuss his new book, “Breakthrough: A Journey from Desperation to Hope,” about his journey of faith and how his relationship with Christ changed his life.
Father Rob grew up in Malta and went through a rebellious phase, “I sort of had a rebellious stage with my parents. When I was 14, I would want to go to the clubs, and my mom would say, ‘Sure you can go, but you have to be home by 8:30,’ and I’m thinking that’s when the nerds go home. Basically, I used to jump out of my window and go to the clubs and hang out with people that were 18 and 19. I used to get drunk and from the drinking, I started to get confidence, and eventually, I started taking drugs. Eventually, by the time I was 16 years old, I was stealing and hanging out with gangs. I ended up in a really dark place.”
Father Dave asks Father Rob what changed his direction in life. “I ended up in a really dark place when I was 16,” Father Rob said. “I was locked in my room. I had gotten into a lot of trouble with one of the gangs and knocked at my parents’ door at 2 a.m. and said, ‘Mom, Dad, you have to hide me.’ So for six weeks, I was hidden in my room with severe depression and anxiety. I used to cry myself to sleep and think of ways I could end my life. I didn’t want to live anymore.”
Father Rob continues: “When I was writing this book, ‘Breakthrough,’ I gave my mom a chapter in which I talk about this darkness … After she read it, she told me about the times she used to be outside of my room, kneeling down and continuously praying. And I honestly believe I’m here because of the perseverance of the prayer of my mother.”
Father Dave mentions that his friend entered a mission community called ICPE in Malta around the same time that he entered seminary. Father Rob shares that this mission team actually played a role in his conversion: “I remember getting a phone call from my grandma who heard of a youth program. And I remember thinking in my room, ‘If I don’t get out of here, I’m going to end up taking my own life.’ I went, and there I found community, positivity, and people who were carrying me to Jesus and not trying to solve my problems with drugs. Most importantly, I found my relationship with Jesus.”
Father Dave points out that Father Rob is also a singer/songwriter, appeared on the show “The X Factor” in Australia, and performed for Pope Benedict XVI at World Youth Day. Father Dave asks, “How far did you get in ‘The X Factor?’” Father Rob explains, “I was asked to audition by the show five different times. I said no four times, and the fifth time I agreed. I told them I would come and audition, but I don’t want to go any further than that. Because honestly, this sounds noble, but there’s no way it feels noble. I’m happy being a priest. I’m happy serving where I am. I don’t need the fame and attention … I’m not interested.” Original Air 3-16-18