The long and winding road

In About Meby Deacon Scott16 Comments

Yes, it’s been a long and winding road that led me to his door. Ordained as a permanent deacon on June 11, 2016 with 22 of my brothers, I have certainly arrived at his door. I thank God for his call to the diaconate and I look forward, God willing, to years of service to the Church.

Scott 1024It’s going to take some “‘splainin” to provide the background about my long and winding road. My hope is that Christ will use me to reveal some of his truth to you through his work in me.

Why not do this on Facebook?
I suppose I could do something similar on Facebook, but I prefer to share my faith in a place where I’ll will have a more permanent record of my thoughts as the years advance. If you like what I write, feel free to comment on it here or share it on Facebook. I’ll certainly share these posts on Facebook, but most of my activity there will be to publish these posts, share content for my employer, the amazing Handmaids of the Precious Blood (more on that later), and for my wonderful wife’s business.

This is not about me, although it may seem that way initially
4917-9The most important characteristic of a deacon is that he understand that his ministry is not about him. Diaconal ministry is all about Christ and doing his will in service of his Church. So, writing about myself and my thoughts feels a bit unsettling. While I want to provide some background of myself and my journey thus far, I do so only that you might somehow experience Christ through his work in me. My goal is to make this blog one that is about Christ living in me. I pray that I will do well to accomplish this goal and that the Holy Spirit will in some way use these ramblings to advance his kingdom on earth.

If you want to know more about the nature of diaconal ministry, especially if you believe you may be called to be a deacon in the Catholic Church, I heartily recommend The Heart of the Diaconate by Deacon James Keating. It is probably the best book for anyone who may be discerning the call to ordination.

OK, so now a bit more about me
Christine and I both have children from a previous marriage. I have four (2 sons and 2 daughters) and she has one daughter. Between us we have 12 beautiful grandchildren. We were married civilly in 1999 and, after we each received a Declaration of Nullity, our marriage was convalidated in 2007.

In August 2010 Christine and I decided to enthrone our home to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Long story short, it was just following this decision to formally declare Jesus Christ as the Lord and King of our home that I began to hear the call to the diaconate. The call came primarily through a friend who is also a deacon, Deacon Mick Spencer. He encouraged me to explore the possibility, especially since the Diocese of Knoxville would soon be putting out a call for men who might be thinking that they were being called to this ministry. As I mentioned this idea to some other friends, it became clear that many of my Catholic brothers and sisters thought I might be a “good deacon.”

Today we are parishioners at Our Lady of Fatima parish in Alcoa, TN, where I am assigned. This beautiful church and parish community is the perfect spiritual home for us. Just 10 minutes from the house, I’m able to attend morning prayer, Mass and holy hour every morning. This has been a source of strength for me in my spiritual journey and I am so grateful to be able to serve in this parish.

My other passion…technology

My home office. 15″ Macbook Pro with two 27″ monitors and over 30TB of external storage.

I’ve always been a technology geek. I began using a personal computer in 1981 when I purchased an 8K Commodore PET that loaded BASIC programs from a cassette tape player. I’m an avid Apple fanboy who manages 4 Macs in our household, two iPads, two iPhones and two Apple Watches. Using technology to solve business problems has always been a hobby of mine. I was in the personal computer industry for over 20 years, starting with sales of the Apple II to schools as an employee of ComputerLand in Hartford, CT in 1983.

I held various positions in the computer reselling industry over the years, including senior management positions for large computer distributors in marketing and product marketing. Christine and I also owned a company in the motorcycle industry, which we sold last year. I enjoyed establishing and developing this company’s web presence (now greatly enhanced by the new owner) and watching it grow into a significant small business.

It had always been a dream of mine to put my technology knowledge and experience to work in the church. So much so that I launched a new business venture called ParishGeeks.com that I hoped would get me hired to develop websites for parishes. I attended a national convention to market my services, but this business never took off. Little did I know that God had a better plan.

In 2012 as an aspirant for the diaconate, I was asked by Bishop Stika to redesign Diocese of Knoxville’s website. This was to be a service project for my formation and quickly occupied a great deal of my time. I was thrilled to finally be applying my geek knowledge in service of the church and never dreamed I’d be doing it on a diocesan level!  I was also asked to develop a site for the diocesan newspaper, the East Tennessee Catholic, and later for a community of cloistered nuns, the Handmaids of the Precious Blood mentioned previously, who were moving from New Mexico to Tennessee. Little did I know that a few years later I would be employed by them as their communications director! I’ve just completed our second website redesign and I manage their communications with the outside world, including their Facebook and Twitter accounts. Talk about God ever surprising those who try to serve him, even those who fail as often as I do! Our God is a gracious and merciful God!! I have never been happier.

With this technology in my background you can bet that I’ll be sharing some of the exciting developments in this field that I follow almost as religiously as my faith. Yeah, I’m the guy who listens to all the Apple-oriented podcasts and reads Techmeme daily to keep up with the latest trends. I also subscribe to dozens of tech blogs that present me with all the latest news and the latest rumors about what’s in the pipeline as far as new products from Apple and other technology companies. If you need some help with your tech, check out my technology concierge business, The Big Bald Geek.

Between keeping up with technology and Catholic news, I have very little time for other reading. I’m working on changing that through a commitment I’ve made to reading scripture daily during my holy hour. As a deacon, I understand that my most important job is to know and fall in love with Christ through a deep knowledge of the sacred scriptures.

I could go on and on…
Yes, it’s been a long and winding road leading to my ordination. I am blessed to be on this journey and I hope some of my thoughts and experiences will assist you in your journey. As previously promised, I will do my best to keep my future posts brief. This is sometimes difficult for me, but I will do my best.

I hope you will return and comment on those thoughts I offer that either ring true for you or that might raise questions you would like answered. I’ll do my best to respond to all the comments you leave for me, especially when you think I’m wrong. I certainly don’t believe I’m going to be right about everything I write about here, so let me have it if I need to be set straight on something. All I ask is that your comments be civil and respectful. After all, we all see things a bit differently and that’s ok. We are, however, called to love one another so let’s be gentle with each other.

If you’ve made it this far, congratulations! Let me know in the comment box and I’ll say a quick prayer for you. Please pray for me too…I need your prayers. If you are really a glutton for punishment, subscribe to this blog by entering your email address in the box located at the top right side of this page. Then you’ll get my new posts in your email as they are published.

As many say here in East Tennessee, “Have a blessed day!”

 

Comments

  1. Hi Scott! I love this, and your sharing of your journey. I pray for you and Christine (and hope you’ll do the same for John and me). I think it’s not just a lovely idea for you to chronicle your journey — it’s a powerful evangelization (and probably catechetical) tool, too.

    God bless you in your ministry — wherever it takes you in your community, and through your readers!

    ~Maria

    1. Author

      Thanks Maria! Great to hear from you. It is my prayer that my humble efforts will be used by our Lord to reach others. I feel inspired to write now…pray that the inspiration continues.

      Prayers for you and John.

  2. I am glad you are sharing Scott. You bring much, give much we appreciate everything you have done for the class. Peace. Phillip.

  3. Hello Again Scott and MERRY CHRISTMAS TO YOU , YOURS AND ALL BLOGEES!
    I converted 11 years ago, Baptised and confirmed Episcopalian in my early years where I attended Catholic churches from time to time. Ironically the church I attend and complete RICA was a church I attended with my girlfriend turned wife, Sheree at age 15. Also, many of my cousins attend school at the church campus, so maybe I was destined to return.
    Keep up the fine work, I know it is hard and as you already discovered , you will be challenged.
    I look forward towards your TECHIE UPDATES.

    Stay the course ,God Bless.

    1. Author

      I’m so happy for you Jim! I’m certain you were meant to return to the Church. Hope all is well down in sunny Florida. I’m sure there are some techie updates in store…just can’t help myself! Peace.

  4. It is truly a blessing to be called to serve and special to say yes I will try. Please learn the android system. This could be a new ministry for you. Larry Rossini

    1. Author

      I know Android and I’ve made my choice…it’s iOS for me. But always willing to help the less fortunate Android users! Thanks, Larry.

  5. Love reading all the thoughts and journey adventures you have been on. It’s been a real pleasure to get to know you and Christine during these past years. Much prayer for your continued journey and years to come. “God is Good, all the time, God is Good”.
    Blessings.. Pauline

    1. Author

      Amen, amen! Thank you for the prayers and constant support. Yes, God IS good, ALL the time.

    1. Author

      Thanks, Deacon Dan. I appreciate all you have done for me as my mentor. Looking forward to seeing you again soon.

  6. Scott, I have been so richly blessed over the years of our formation by your faithful friendship and prayerful support. I pray we have many years of fruitful ministry for the Kingdom of God.

    1. Author

      It’s been a blessing for me also, David. You are a very special person and you’ll be an excellent deacon. Thank you for your prayers. I look forward to many more years of friendship.

  7. Scott and Christine,
    Please continue to keep us in your prayers. Things are going well. John seems happy. Enjoy reading about your life and accomplishments. Proud of you both.S

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