It was less than a month ago, on the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, December 8, that Dan and Mary Leigh were at a waterfall in eastern Pennsylvania. “He told me how much he loved me and wanted to spend the rest of his life with me,” Mary Leigh recalled. “Then he got down on one knee and asked me to marry him.” It was a quite a journey for a twenty-something couple that just months earlier admitted doubts about “the whole online dating thing.”
Dan and Mary Leigh both attended Franciscan University in Ohio, but they actually never met. It was after college that each went through what they termed a period of spiritual and emotional growth.
“Around the same time we each felt a calling to join CatholicMatch even though neither of us felt it was a great way to meet people,” Mary Leigh said candidly. “We decided that we should give it a chance.”
Not only were both Dan and Mary Leigh doubters about online dating, they were each ready to throw in the towel on dating in general. They thought they could never meet the sort of perfect match that would lead to marriage.
Each gave their CatholicMatch profiles their best effort, including making use of the interview questionnaire. When Mary Leigh sent Dan an emotigram, he responded by taking her questionnaire.
“We started talking,” Mary Leigh said. “And we talked on the phone for four hours.” She lived in the Poconos region of eastern Pennsylvania, while he was nearby in neighboring New Jersey. The couple soon began meeting halfway between their homes and then spending every weekend together.
They shared not only the same faith, but the same commitment to intellectual growth and Mary Leigh further admired Dan’s ambition and willingness to give of himself to others.
One other thing she admired was his romantic side, as Mary Leigh found herself at the waterfall looking down at the man she loved, who was awaiting an answer to his question. “I was so happy I forgot to say yes,” she recalled. “He had to ask me if my response met yes and I said of course.”
“Before him, I never believed in love at first sight,” Mary Leigh said enthusiastically. “Now I can’t help but believe.”