Meet Matt Rice
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Name: Matt Rice
Previous/Current Occupation: President/Founder of Collaborative Catholic Formation Ministries (www.collaborativecatholics.org)
Church: St. Joseph Catholic Church in Bryan, TX
Major and classification: Ha, my volunteers say I’m old. I’m class of ’00 B.S. in Computer Science and M. Div. with Biblical Concentration from Catholic Theological Union
Any passions/interests? My family gets first billing here, hopefully, for obvious reasons. My wife and I have 4 kids ranging from 9mo to 9 years old. We have a lot of fun working with God learning how to care for and raise the souls He’s entrusted to us. Another passion is youth ministry. I’ve been working in Catholic youth ministry in one capacity or another since I graduated college, puts me in my 12th year of ministry this year and still loving it!
How did you become a volunteer/why are you involved? 2 years ago in the fall 40 days for life campaign, I finally took the challenge to come out and pray. It only took a couple of weeks of being out there to see that there needed to be more counselors. I ached every time I saw someone on the other side of the fence, and I wasn’t equipped to try and help. It was this ache that led me to be trained as a sidewalk counselor, by the time that campaign was over I was trained and on the sidewalk.
Why you are pro life (is there a story here?): It’s weird, I look back and wonder when I actually became pro-life, and I can’t tell you when. In high school a friend asked me to help him pay for his girlfriend’s abortion, and I refused. I can’t say I was overtly pro-life at the time – I just knew that something about it was wrong. Like most people I had some questions/objections that hadn’t been answered, but over time these objections have been answered. I am pro-life because it is the truth, if you search for answers long enough with an open heart and mind you will come to the truth.
Any additional thoughts (comments): Before I was trained as a sidewalk counselor, I always told myself that I was doing enough to pray at home during the campaigns. I said I would pray, but I never did set a schedule or an alarm and often forgot. I said I’d pray when I got the emails from 40 Days, but often I didn’t even read them. It wasn’t until I actually got out on the sidewalk for an hour a week that I can honestly say that I really prayed during a campaign. It is amazing how God tugs and tugs at us, and when we finally relent and follow, He shows us just how much He can do, God is Good!