Your Stories

Learning to trust God's call - Tyler's first year of seminary

Seminarian Tyler Arens is like most Catholics. That’s the first thing he wants you to understand. He always felt God calling out to him, but not in a “part the Red Sea, cast seven plagues” kind of way.

He attended the University of Michigan, took a job after graduation in 2008 in the Office of Financial Aid at Michigan State, bought a house, stocked it with cultural comforts and generally enjoyed his social life.

Priesthood or Marriage? Jacob trusts in discernment process

Jacob Kanclerz always thought he would get married and have a family. Then, after he graduated from Michigan State and saw the witness of other young adults, he started to wonder if he might be called to the priesthood. The road to discovering his true vocation proved to be more winding than Jacob expected, yet he’s certain that God led him each step of the way.

Gordon waits for God to call him home

Gordon Terwilliger is knocking on heaven’s door. Perhaps lightly tapping would be a more apt description, as Gordy’s physique and strength are fragments of what they used to be. In the early months of 2016, Gordon, full of life and energy, was traveling with his wife, Margaret, helping a brother-in-law build an out-building, exercising regularly and working his maintenance job at St. James Parish in Mason. Everything in 68-year-old Gordy’s world seemed fine – except for the shortness of breath and swollen ankles he was acutely aware of.

Evangelizing in Friendship

Carol Demshuk and Lela Vandenberg spoke at the diocesan assembly in Lansing in October 2016. They shared the story of Carol, a parishioner at St. James in Mason, accompanying Lela on her return to the Catholic Church. Carol followed the lead of the Holy Spirit in praying for Lela’s spiritual growth, in letting her love for Jesus in the Eucharist be her witness, in giving timely invitations to Mass and suggestions to look at Scripture – and in accompanying her through life as her friend and prayer partner.

Syrians Ahmad and Manal building new life in Michigan

Ahmad and Manal Daboul are peaceful people. Grateful to be safe in the U.S., they shake their heads at the tragic circumstances that sent their beloved Syria into its current chaos and destruction.

“To talk about my city, Damascus,” Manal says through interpreter Aya Turki, “we were living in peace. Friends and neighbors always in peace. Shia or Suni never made any difference. Our faith is a peaceful religion, but people of all faiths lived side by side.”

For Abby and Mitchell, FaithFest ‘shows everyone how cool the Catholic Church is’

Mitchell and Abby Feldpausch attended the inaugural FaithFest in June of 2016 and took their daughters Nora, Zaylie, and Lucia (now ages three, two, and one). The couple looks forward to attending FaithFest 2017 with an additional family member – the baby they are expecting this spring. “A lot of our friends were going last year and bringing their kids, so that made it easier and was a great chance for the kids to enjoy their friends and for us to gather together,” Mitchell says.


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