How We Met…
I was always a little different than my siblings, friends and pretty much anyone else my age. In high school, I had this life changing experience and knew I wanted to serve God and teach others about him. I never drank, did drugs or went all the way with a boyfriend. Those things for whatever reason just didn’t interest me.
For college, I decided to attend Newman University in Wichita, KS to major in Theology there. During my freshman and sophomore years, I had a blast! But quickly found myself hungering for something more. I remember telling a girlfriend of mine that I was sick of dating, that I so desired to be a mom and wife. She looked and me like I was crazy. I didn’t blame her.
A part of me thought, because I was so ‘different’, that I was called to be a nun. I found myself worried, anxious and almost plagued with this vocation crisis. Was I called to be a nun or a wife/Mother?!?I decided to forget about either and just be a student, a damn good student! And I ran cross country, worked, and became a campus minister as well. I decided to serve God as best I could doing what I KNOW He called me to be: a single student, trying to bring Christ to others.
During the Summer of 2006, after my sophomore year, I broke off the beginning of what could have been a wonderful and holy relationship and decided to spend my summer being totally God’s, so I taught Totus Tuus (which means totally yours in Latin). It is basically this traveling vacation bible school that teaches the Catholic faith to kids for a week. I loved my experience for many reasons, but really wanted to spend this summer giving ALL of my self to God and see what he does with me.
First week of Totus Tuus was overwhelming. It was like prayer bootcamp and I was out of shape! But, I made some great friends and looked up to a lot of them. One of them, a seminarian named Matt, was so passionate about his faith. He just graduated from Franciscan University so he was one of those, ‘crazy charismatics’ which meant in Oklahoma that you were probably not Catholic. But I could not stop listening to Him when he spoke. I thought, “gosh, what an amazing priest he is going to make!”
Matt and I became closer and closer of friends, talking about the faith and I really grew to love him. I loved him so soon because I could so clearly see Jesus in him in a way I have never experienced. He asked to pray over me, I accepted…
Nervous beyond belief (I guess because I didn’t want to break any Catholic rules or anything), I stayed in the chapel after Mass, along with a couple other people. We knelt down and Matt and another girl, Heather, started praying over me. I can’t explain it, time just flew by, I felt calm, peaceful–all nerves passed away. Matt was saying things to me that I never told him, like that I needed to forgive myself for a couple of bad experiences in my past. He told me that God forgives me and wants me to forgive myself. He told me I was innocent, pure, and beautiful to God. I believed that God was using Matt’s voice to draw me closer to Himself, to call me deeper in intimacy with Him. Heather began speaking about how she saw Mary, Jesus’ mother who wanted to tell me something. Heather asked me what Mary wanted to say to me.
With my eyes closed, I so clearly saw Mary reaching out to me, urging me, saying, “Be like me.” I immediately knew she was urging me to become a wife, mother and comforter to others. I felt the deepest peace-something I longed for such a long time.
After this experience, I thanked those who prayed with me and quietly went back to my room. I knew I had to write my experience down, as I knew that the previous hour had changed my life forever. I was called to be married. I just had no idea the guy holding one of my hands that night would become my husband…