“Oh, the places you’ll go!” The title of this favorite Dr. Seuss book has come to mean even more to me as I journey through life, and find myself going to surprising -sometimes even astonishing – places!
Seven months ago, when my husband Rick was ordained in the Diocese of Metuchen in New Jersey, I became a deacon’s wife. If anyone had suggested this to me a few years ago, I would have laughed in complete disbelief! Yes, Rick had always had strong Catholic faith from when I first met him, but I thought only ‘holy roller’ types became deacons and he was definitely NOT that. And his wife wears no halo, either!
But still, the gentle, quiet call came
One Sunday, a deacon in our parish remarked to Rick as we were preparing to begin Mass: “You know, I’ve been watching you during Mass for awhile now. Something tells me you’d make a great deacon. And, there’s a new class starting up this year. What do you think?” Rick laughed incredulously and dismissed the idea outright that day. But… the deacon’s words had left their mark.
So we prayed about it, and the answer came quickly to both of us – quite simply, we couldn’t think of any good reasons why NOT! There was a rightness about Rick’s becoming a deacon. God’s fingerprints seemed to be all over it. We were being “called to greater love” by the Church. What could we say, but YES?
So we walked together through the years of formation. Our faith in God, and in our new calling, grew. But the ‘places’ Rick would go could be stressful. Becoming a student again, writing papers, studying for exams, and intense evening classes. His home office became a study, and I knew not to interrupt when the door was closed.
And wives became sisters
As you might expect, the class of deacon-candidates grew close, like brothers. But to my delight, our group of wives went from being strangers, to feeling like sisters, too. We exchanged spiritual and practical support through family times happy and sad: births, graduations, weddings, funerals, health and sickness. We learned together what would be expected of us as wives, and how to set limits when demands on our husbands were tipping the balance of our family lives. We laughed, cried, vented, celebrated, and prayed together.
And now, we have a wonderful new way to meet and connect as sisters in faith: Called to Greater Love.
Starting today, we can begin sharing our experiences, ideas, insights, and reflections with each other as wives of deacons and deacon-candidates.
Starting today, we can become spiritual friends, no matter how many miles separate our homes and parishes! I look forward to our getting to know each other and finding ways to nourish our spirits together.
Post your comments, ideas, questions, survival tips, prayer practices…our community needs YOU!
How have you experienced sisterhood and community with other wives of deacons and deacon-candidates?
How have you helped, or been helped by, wives in your diocesan or parish community?
How do you think this website, and blog, can inspire and help wives on this journey?
Do you have any resources for keeping prayer and balance in your marriages and family life that you’d like to share?