by Randy Hain | December 22, 2011 12:01 am

As part of my Advent preparation, I have been thinking and praying about who I am thankful for in my life.  This post is about the people who have made the success of The Integrated Catholic Life™ eMagazine possible.

A Leap of Faith

Sometimes, we may be called to take a true leap of faith.  In April 2010, after much discernment and prayer, Deacon Mike Bickerstaff and I co-founded the The Integrated Catholic Life™.  We had a strong desire to serve Christ and share the Gospel and the teachings of the Church in an online magazine.  In the years leading up to the ICL launch, we had been involved in ministries that helped our fellow Catholics lead Christ-centered lives that fully integrated faith, family and work.  The ICL was a natural progression of that ministry work and the writing and speaking we were doing.

Of course, we had the usual questions.  Who would we ask to write for us?  What would the eMagazine look like?  How would we get a logo?  How would people find out about ICL?  The questions were endless, but God answered them in time and we always seemed to find our way with the right resources and people appearing when needed.

One of the more interesting things about the founding of the ICL is the strong partnership between Deacon Mike and me.  He is a lifelong Catholic, a successful business owner and a full-time Director of Adult Education and a deacon in the Archdiocese of Atlanta.   I also run a small business and converted to the Church in 2006 with my family.  My passions and community involvement center on sharing our beautiful Catholic faith, developing young people and promoting autism awareness.  We both contribute weekly blogs to ICL.  Our eclectic mix of skills, mutual respect, passion for sharing the faith and the guidance of the Holy Spirit makes the partnership work.

The Contributing Writers

We have been blessed to work with wonderful Catholic writers who share their incredible gifts with our readers.  These writers range from the world famous to the relatively unknown.   Their authentic voices and writing that is faithful to the Magisterium have earned a loyal following that continues to grow at a rapid pace.  Our contributing writers are like family and will always have our deep respect and sincere gratitude.  We are also grateful to our contributing photographers and the beautiful images they have shared with ICL.

Our Readers

It is wonderful to know that you are doing something that serves Christ.  It is even better to see the fruits of that work positively affect others.  We have heard from countless readers since we launched ICL about how they have been affected by the work of the ICL contributing writers.  The enthusiastic and loyal support ICL has received has been overwhelming and humbling.

So, to our contributing writers, we say thank you!  ICL is not possible without your amazing contributions.  Deacon Mike, thank you for your friendship, partnership and all you do to make ICL a success.  The support and prayers of our readers have helped ICL grow beyond our wildest dreams and we are incredibly thankful for you.  The Holy Spirit has guided our efforts from the beginning and all of this is for God’s glory, not ours.

My words are not enough, but know they are from my heart.

Randy Hain, Senior Editor for The Integrated Catholic Life™, is the author of The Catholic Briefcase: Tools for Integrating Faith and Work which was recently released by Liguori Publications. ”The Catholic Briefcase[1]” is available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble online and your local Catholic bookstore.

Please help us in our mission to assist readers to integrate their Catholic faith, family and work. Tell your family and friends about this article using both the Share and Recommend buttons below and via email. We value your comments and encourage you to leave your thoughts below. Thank you! – The Editors


  1. The Catholic Briefcase:

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