Hi, I’m Victoria!
I’m 25 years old, living on the East Coast and trying to be holy (aren’t we all?!). I’m a cradle Catholic who was passionate about the faith in high school, lost my way after college and came back when I realized the things of this world could never fully satisfy me.
This blog is my side passion to my day job as a TV network news writer.
How it all Began
After I graduated from college in 2014, I got a job as a producer at a local TV news station in Ohio. It wasn’t a dream job for me, but it was full-time employment, so I was grateful.
I started skipping Mass to sleep in on Sundays. My excuse – there was only a 10am mass, and if God really wanted me to be up for it, he’d make sure I woke up in time (which may have happened once).
I felt consumed by this thing called “the real world” and didn’t understand how I could possibly afford the life I wanted and still retire someday making $30,000 per year! So, I spent a lot of my free time learning about personal finance.
I read up on index funds, ETFs, passive income and early retirement, hoping to use that information to get ahead financially.
I also really wanted to get back East to be near my family. I’d been away for 5 years and I missed my big, Italian famiglia!
So in the summer of 2015, I put in my notice at work without another job lined up.
Thankfully, I did find another TV job close to my house! But…My 5-day work week included every weekend, most holidays and – my favorite (sarcasm, of course) – I had to go into work at either 1am or 3am depending on the day.
With my schedule, I constantly felt like I was missing out on life.
I was still quite often choosing sleep over going to mass. Still, deep down I knew the Church offered what I wanted and needed. It was one of those things where I knew I’d eventually go back to it, but at that moment, I felt like I was drowning and just wanted to be in bed any chance I got. (The funny thing is, looking back, going to mass is exactly what I needed!)
Soul-searching was in order. So I signed up to take a 2-week group trip to Ireland and Scotland in fall 2016.
Before I had left for Ireland, one of my big fears was having a medical emergency, namely (and irrationally) a heart attack.
Imagine my relief and delight when I got to Ireland and found out my roommate was an emergency cardiac nurse! Thank You Jesus! She and I hit it off right away and are still good friends.
The trip was an amazing experience! I felt surprisingly at peace. It felt like I was visiting another world – I could see God’s hand in the cliffs, the ocean and the green countryside. I even went to mass at a teeny tiny chapel in Dublin!
On the plane ride back, I felt jubilant. I was starting to see there was more to life than the abyss of my job.
Two days after I got back, my company announced it was moving 2 hours away and I’d be laid off if I didn’t move.
After the initial shock, I felt excited, free even. Maybe this was my chance to try something new.
So I started a blog (not this one) about personal finance. After a couple of months writing, I felt like something was missing! I was just one of hundreds, maybe thousands of personal finance bloggers.
How was I different?
At the time, I was really growing in my faith and had committed to going to mass every week. I felt like there must be a way that the Church’s teaching guides money decisions. Kind of like What Would Jesus Do?, except What Would Jesus Buy?
I thought people would laugh and judge me for looking at it from that point of view.
I decided not to move to my company’s new location, so I found a new job at another TV station in 2017- this time in a big city at a big Network. I still knew this wasn’t my passion, but for now it paid the bills.
My strand of hope was that I could somehow save enough money to retire early and never have to work again. My net worth had slowly but surely become my safety blanket.
I’d constantly check my savings and investment accounts to see if my net worth had grown. I would sign up for credit cards to get great sign-up bonuses and then leverage my rewards. I’d print coupons and search for deals.
Somewhere in all of this, I realized I was chasing dollars and cents and savings more than I was chasing God.
We all know how that pans out! It’s like the saying, “You can never get enough of what you don’t need, because what you don’t need won’t satisfy you” (Dallin H. Oaks).
As much as I yearn for financial security, I yearn even more for a relationship with Christ.
Money is an inevitable part of life. You need it to live, and so I have to believe that there is an intersection of our lives as consumers and as Catholics.
I’m not an expert in theology or Catholic history or tradition, but I have been a Catholic all my life. I do my best to learn about the faith everyday through reading and prayer.
I’m not a perfect person! I don’t put people (except Jesus) on pedestals and hope you won’t put me on one. I make mistakes like everyone. I’m learning, just like everyone. That said, if something I said goes against Catholic teaching, please let me know! I’m not infallible and make every effort to be accurate.