Once upon a time…
Fed up with the difficulty of meeting committed Catholic young
adults, a California girl joined a Catholic Website called
StRaphael.net (later to become Catholic Match) in the fall of 2001. A Kentucky boy joined a couple
months later for the same reason.
One day, the California girl came across the Kentucky boy’s
profile. Something struck her inside—was it the cute photo or the fact
his profile was the most down to earth she had ever seen? She emailed
him to say hi and compliment his “normal” profile. He graciously
responded…and that was the beginning.
Hi, we’re Kristy and Mark. We met on St.Raphael.net in 2002.
To our great delight, we married on July 29, 2006. Sure, our success
story is late. We meant to submit it during our engagement, but things
got a little busy. Then again, our relationship moved slowly as well.
Better late than never.
After meeting online, our correspondence slowly increased. So
did our methods of communication—from email, to IM, and finally to
phone. Kristy still remembers the chill of delight that went down her
spine upon hearing Mark’s voice for the first time. Thanks to free long
distance cell phones, the calls increased to 1-2 hours. In October
2002, Mark flew to California to meet Kristy in person for the first
time. Sparks flew right away, but they decided to still remain friends.
A couple months later during Kristy’s visit to Kentucky, we officially
began dating (in a chapel, no less.)
After about a year and a half of long-distance dating,
marriage became a real possibility. However, we found it
heart-wrenching to only see each other every two months, each maintaining
separate lives. Because Mark already had a job and house in Kentucky,
Kristy (at the advice of her parents) made the decision to move out to
the Bluegrass State to further discern. That meant leaving family,
friends, and roots behind. The tradeoff would be a more accurate
picture of sharing the ups and downs of daily life.
Kristy and her Dad packed up her VW Jetta and took a five-day
road trip to Kentucky. Her parents helped her move into an apartment.
Mark and Kristy began a year of seeing each other every day. The
discernment was accelerated.
Everything culminated on August 20, 2005, when Mark proposed
to Kristy in front of the Blessed Sacrament at their parish Perpetual
Adoration Chapel. On July 29, 2006, in front of many family and friends
(including a couple who met and married through St. Raph’s), they became
husband and wife. In honor of St. Raphael, to whom we turned to
frequently through the dating and engagement, we had a reading from the
Book of Tobit and mentioned him in our program.
After nine months of marriage, we remain amazed as God continues to guide us on this journey.
What really helped us was a strong foundation of friendship.
Meeting online essentially made us fall in love from the “inside out.”
The many letters and phone calls really helped us to learn how to
communicate with each other. Of course, nothing fully replaces
in-person communication, but it was a start. Both of us never expected
our online friendship and subsequent marriage to happen. Perhaps that’s
one of the perks of Divine Providence. We recommend if you are dating
or seeking to date through this website—pray. And seek friendship.
After all, your future spouse should be your best friend.
relationship, taking it slow really helped. But above all, keep Christ
in the center and turn to Him for guidance. He can definitely relate to
any frustrations with trying to contact people and getting no response!
Even more so, His love and grace make anything possible…like a
cross-country relationship. Thanks, St. Raphael and Catholic Match!
…and Mark and Kristy went on to live happily ever after.
This article can be reprinted by including the following credit:
This article is reprinted with written permission of 4marks Magazine
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