Debra, a 58-year-old from central Florida, works in sales and she spends a lot of time on the road, traveling from one point to another to meet with potential clients. She makes frequent use of her GPS in helping her guide the way. When it came to relationships, she decided on a similar course—”I thought maybe it’s time to let God be my GPS,” she said.
Later, she was at a parish festival and began talking to a deacon whom she knew well. The deacon asked her how she was doing, and he quickly emphasized that he didn’t want to hear the usual “work is fine,” routine. He wanted to know how she was really doing. The issue of relationships—both betrayal in her past and difficulty in finding the right person—came up.
“Then you have to put yourself out there,” Debra was advised. “God isn’t the stork, who is going to just show up.”
The pattern of events showing the hand of Divine Providence—or the GPS from above if you will—continued at Mass. Debra noticed the CatholicMatch ad in the parish bulletin. The member stories archive is full of examples of people who found the site in the same way, but this time it was a little unique. Debra only noticed the ad because the lady in the pew in front of her had the bulletin situated in such a way that it jumped out at Debra. “It was an act of faith,” Debra said with conviction.
She created a free account on the site and decided to become a full member based on one simple fact—”If men are willing to admit they’re Catholic, that’s something.” It was enough to make her move past what had been a negative experience with online dating in the secular world, including being spoken to inappropriately on an initial phone call. “I’m not your wanton 900 call,” she said recalling the disrespect previously shown her.
One evening, while on CatholicMatch, she got a notification that John had messaged her. He was 55-years-old and lived in the same area. After a few message exchanges and a phone conversation, they quickly decided to get together. John suggested they meet at Sunday Mass.
“At first I thought it would be a little strange” Debra recalled. “It’s your first date and you’re not going to talk for an hour. But then I thought ‘no, this is good.’” When she spotted John at church, she liked the fact he looked just like his picture and they enjoyed a pleasant afternoon together.
They continued to date, and it was John’s gentlemanly manner that most impressed Debra. “Some men will come on strong,” she said. “But he is somebody that truly does respect a woman.” John comes from a strong Irish Catholic, faith-based family, and he and Debra share a great deal in common. They like a lot of the same music, enjoying sports and he also works in sales, as an insurance agent. With both of their jobs requiring travel, Debra says it helps to have someone who understands the professional demands they each deal with.
It’s been a year since that first date at Sunday Mass, and Debra and John are still together. There’s no pressure on either side, as they discern what God’s will is in their lives. Right now they’re enjoying each other’s company, being at Mass most every Sunday together, and finally being with someone they can trust.