I walked into the chapel at the local Catholic college. The chapel lights were dimmed, but the altar was illuminated with candles. I was surrounded by Catholics my age as we all knelt in Eucharistic adoration. We prayed evening prayer together and then after the holy hour we gathered in the basement to chat over coffee while listening to one of the local Catholic artists.
The organizers of the event encouraged us to walk around and introduce ourselves to anyone who looked new. I walked over to a girl leaning up against the wall and asked her what she thought of adoration? “It was amazing!” she said. “Why don’t more people know about this? How can we get the word out?”
Many single Catholics have the same question about how to find like-minded Catholics that are local. And CatholicMatch frequently gets requests from members inquiring about Catholic events and how they can connect better with local members.
The CatholicMatch team is constantly looking at the ideas and requests of its members so they can make a better tool to help introduce single Catholics. They also want to encourage members to take initiative to bring Catholics together in their own communities.
Brian Barcaro, CEO and co-founder of CatholicMatch.com, said: “Despite being the founder of an online service that introduces singles virtually I’ve always believed that CatholicMatch.com should complement other offline dating efforts and encourage Catholics to take full advantage of the opportunities the single state allows. There are many ways for singles to meet: through churches, friends and other events. We want to help facilitate more pathways for Catholics to meet their spouses and answer God’s call faithfully.”
To help build more opportunities for Catholics to meet each other, CatholicMatch is launching a “Groups” function so that members can connect locally and through shared interests.
CatholicMatch members can go to the Groups home page and see what is happening locally, around the country or in topical groups (members need to be logged into CatholicMatch.com in order to see the Groups page).
The groups feature is currently in beta so not all cities/dioceses have a group. Over time the numbers of groups will increase and if any member wants to start a group they can request to have one added. Members can post events, share links, points of interest, photos and videos to help people connect geographically. They can also connect through common interests like sports team, music, or anything people are passionate about.
“We’re trying to create a social stream where people can consume and engage with different kinds of media and events,” said CatholicMatch co-founder Mike Lloyd. “It gives an opportunity to help CatholicMatch members find Catholics that are in their area or passionate about common interests. We want to help connect members outside the virtual space.”
CatholicMatch members will be automatically placed in a local group, but will have access to all groups.
To access the local stream, members click on “my groups.” To view what is happening across the country, members click on the “all groups” stream. CatholicMatch members also have the opportunity to join others groups—just navigate to the local groups home page and click “join the group.”
Recently Mike Lloyd was traveling to D.C. and posted a question in the local content stream about which Church to attend. “Someone from D.C. saw my question and gave me a great suggestion!”
The groups stream is ready for all CatholicMatch members to use. The CatholicMatch customer support team encourages feedback from members and collects ideas to help make an already dynamic community even better.
Debbie Kronk from customer support says, “Incorporating user feedback has always been a priority for our team. We listen to what CatholicMatch members want on the site and try to make it a better tool for single Catholics to meet their spouses.”
For more tips to improve your profile, read our FREE Online Dating Guide For Catholics.