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An American boy (Andrew) meets a Dominican/Puerto Rican girl (Cristina), they fall in love…..and you know the rest!
Just a Catholic couple trying to bring together two VERY different cultures….all for His glory. (Thank God Andrew can speak spanish!)
Andrew was raised in Virginia Beach, VA the son of two beach bums and the oldest of a family of 6. He himself is an unorthodox beach bum (he doesnt currently take up any of the boarding sports) but never-the-less misses the beach and calls it his home. After years of working in youth ministry and missions trips during high school, he fell in love with serving the poor and after two years of studying in college, discerned a calling to serve the poor in Honduras. It was there that his love for the hispanic culture grew and he set out to learn the spanish language…for the Lord knew that he needed to be able to communicate with his future mother-in-law. (She speaks much better english than she gets credit for) After 2 years of serving with the Missioners of Christ in Honduras and discerning the possible call of joining the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal, Andrew returned to the states to finish studying and to discern his vocation.
Cristina was born in the Dominican Republic (to a Puerto Rican father and a Dominican mother) and was brought to New York City when she was 2. She spent the next years of her childhood going to school in Manhattan and spending her summer vacations in DR (This means that Cristina can dance Merengue but also knows how to “keep-it-real”)
After the excitement of being raised in the city-that-does’nt-sleep, and after a few tense years in the city post Sept. 11th, (Cristina’s high school was literally on the same block as the World Trade Center) Cristina found herself working with the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal. There she developed her faith and simultaneously her deep love for serving the poor. Before she knew it, she was preparing herself for a long-term mission trip down to Honduras, another Latin American country that had yet a very different culture than her own. Little did Andrew know that within a few weeks of his leaving Honduras, his future bride was on her way down to serve in the SAME community! Cristina later recalls hearing stories about some “crazy – honduran gringo” who had traveled all over the countryside of Honduras. Andrew hopes that those stories were flattering.
A few years later, as God prepared their hearts, they met for the “first time” again in Virginia Beach and the Lord allowed them to see each other exactly how they were meant to – as “THE ONE”. It didn’t take very long for either of them to know that God was doing something very special in their hearts. Since that June day in 2010, He has brought them on a wild ride and has blessed them with an unbelievable number of graces and miracles along the way.
Now, they both work for the hispanic community in the Archdiocese of New York in Manhattan where they are preparing for their next big mission -