FOREVER: A Catholic Devotional for Your Marriage (Week One)

Spontaneous date night in the middle of the week. Not totally unheard of in the Dyogi home after our spur-of-the-moment boba date in August, so I figured we could pull this one off. I asked my sister Emeline if she could watch the kids so that Gary and I could make it out all the way to Christ Cathedral for Jackie Francois Angel and Bobby Angel’s book release of their new Catholic marriage devotional. We desperately needed time together and something concrete to keep us connected on a regular basis, as super-busy as we are.

Surprisingly, after eleven years of marriage, connection still doesn’t always come easy for us. At least when it comes to any interaction beyond letting my husband know whether I have a client appointment to go to when he comes home…if the kids ate dinner or not…who wasn’t getting electronics the next day because they were fighting with a sibling. I’ve addressed the importance of actively working on our marriage, but it is definitely a challenge because the kids and work have been our main priorities since our oldest was born. If you ask Gary, he will tell you that we have a good marriage, which I agree with; however, I know that there’s a deeper intimacy that we can share and model for our children.

So yes, I’d bug him every so often about it. And no, I wasn’t planning on letting it go.

Why? Because marriage is incredibly fragile in our society. The sacrament itself in the Church is solid, but with brokenness, concupiscence, temptation, complacency, emotional baggage, etc., etc., etc., the husbands and wives of today need to fiercely nurture the love that God has placed in our hearts for each other.

Hence, down the 405 and 22 freeways in rush hour traffic we went.

It was a beautiful evening, with Jackie and Bobby starting off with a Q&A about their book and their marriage. We appreciated their candid, honest, and grace-filled responses, knowing well the struggles of living as both spouses and parents of young children. Finding their experiences common to our own got us excited about starting the devotional together, and it came at a perfect time as we’d been planning to grow our ministry and start a YouTube channel for it. Lifting up our relationship in prayer during adoration that night led to the beginning of a new journey for me and Gary – one that would teach us more about each other and about God’s plan for our family.

We made this video at Christ Cathedral immediately after meeting Jackie and Bobby and committed to doing the devotional every day for 6 weeks.

We just finished Week One a whole three weeks later because life happened. Between work schedules, kiddos, chores, family events, much-needed rest, and a temporary pause due to issues we needed to work out with each other, it was hard getting the time in to do the daily devotions. Nevertheless, we made it to Day 7. I’m proud of us for even starting this because it’s more than we’ve ever done before, and I’m so grateful to Gary for persevering through it with me.

My favorite Week One challenge was from Day 3 when we had to find time to be alone with God.

A lot went through my mind and heart as I stood in front of the statue of St. Anthony.

St. Anthony statue
St. Anthony of Padua

I knew that if I myself was not abiding in the Lord, it would be very difficult to strengthen my marriage and see my husband with the eyes of Jesus. As I write this, I’m making a mental note to be more intentional with my individual prayer time so that it can then feed into my relationship with Gary and the kids.

The topics in FOREVER do touch on very personal aspects of marriage, and we will speak to these as best we can. Many of the subjects have already been publicly discussed in our talks over the years or shared with my Creighton Model clients at our follow-up appointments. These videos are primarily for our Dyogi kids so that they can witness the beauty of our vocation with all of the hills and valleys. And if there is something others can learn or be consoled by, praise the good Lord.

To get your copy of FOREVER: A Catholic Devotional for Your Marriage by Jackie Francois Angel and Bobby Angel, visit Pauline Books & Media or for the Kindle version. There’s no better time to start than right now!

If you can do it in 6 weeks, that would be awesome. But if you have to take some time working through it like we do, that’s okay! No matter what, you would be building the foundation of your domestic church with Jesus Christ as the cornerstone. It’s worth the investment. Your family depends on it. Have fun!

How to Make a Million-Dollar First Impression with Nicole Kidman (or Your Future Wife)

Endearing and witty…a preciously charming burst of sunshine on late-night TV…

The Tonight Show’s multi-talented comedian host and Classroom Instrument band director Jimmy Fallon is loved by the masses because he’s as genuine as the boy next door. What makes him so well-received by America is that he’s real…and vulnerable.

He’s everything most people want to be: fun, entertaining, and authentic.

And on Tuesday, January 6, 2015, the airwaves transmitted an unforgettable interview with Nicole Kidman that would leave the audience in stitches because of the big-time secret revealed by the world-renowned actress.

You can watch the clip here (please do – it’s hilarious!)

Naturally both of them were embarrassed, and we got a good laugh at their expense. He brought it up; she wanted to talk about it, right? I think it either opened up a can of worms or brought closure to the fact that Jimmy might have been wondering all these years why at that “meeting” she never even mentioned Bewitched, and that Nicole couldn’t understand why such a magnetic TV personality suddenly went mute in her presence.

Of course, you know me. I couldn’t resist turning Jimmy’s first encounter with Nicole into a what-you-need-to-do lesson on interacting with the opposite sex. So here are 5 ways to make a million-dollar first impression with Nicole Kidman…or your potential future wife:

Your home/apartment is your safe haven and you likely treat it as such. Everything that you are is reflected in the place where you live. If you’re already nervous about meeting someone, hang out at a coffee shop…wine bar…somewhere comfortable that you’ve been before so that you can at least relax a little more. Chances are that if you’re hosting her at your bachelor pad, ten minutes…ten hours…or ten days isn’t enough time to figure out what kind of cheese and crackers she likes. This doesn’t go to say that you’re necessarily concealing pieces of your lifestyle, but the more nerve-wracking the situation, the more you resort to those things in your safe haven that help you subconsciously escape reality. Yes, I’m talking about the video games. After you’ve established the friendship, I would suggest inviting her to a nickel arcade and see if she can at least come close to beating you at Donkey Kong and Street Fighter. Then you’ll know you’ve got something in common. But as it goes in the potent and powerful message recently published by Bobby Angel, you might want to tone down on the video games so that you can prepare yourself for the curveballs that life will inevitably throw at you.

Ditch the hat, even if you haven’t showered in two days. Just like the video games, it’s another subtle way of hiding and shying away from people…and it’s kind of obvious when you’re wearing a cap indoors where it’s not functional for shielding the sun from your eyes. She wants to see your face, your tousled hair (or in my husband Gary’s case, his bald head), and most especially your smile. If your wingman didn’t give you much notice, work with what you’ve got! At least brush your teeth…

Speaking of whom… This friend of yours will actually put you both at ease if he sticks around. The third person can keep conversation flowing when they notice awkward silences, especially because your friend knows one or both of you really well. If you’re shy and not good at small talk, he will likely throw in funny factoids about growing up together or interesting things that you could share more about. However, if he’s the kind of friend that doesn’t know when to keep his mouth shut and starts spilling the beans about your past relationships, etc., then you’ll have to take over and lead the conversation that would otherwise turn disastrous. If it seems like he’s sabotaging the moment…umm, he probably likes her, too.

Most women love to talk about themselves. Not always in an egotistical way, but because we’re very emotional beings and openness generates bonding. We love it. That’s why we can talk all night with our girlfriends. So ask about her interests and the topics she’s passionate about. Try to understand why she pours so much of her heart into what she does. What’s her family like? What were her favorite memories as a kid? Don’t talk about yourself unless she asks. If she asks questions as well, then it means she’s not all about her. If you dominate the conversation, then she might be reading it as you being all about you. But the important thing is that you talk…about something.

With every first interaction we have with others, there are always two different perspectives…two different frameworks…two lives influenced by different upbringings that affect the way we size up and make judgments about one another. From that first impression we decide whether or not we want to get to know the other person more. If you’re truly intrigued by this woman – as intimidating as her resume, looks, education, and faith might be – make sure that your body language also communicates that you care about who she is as a person. Even if marrying her isn’t even on your radar, she was created with an incredible dignity that deserves to be honored. And when you come out of your shell as a man, it will give her the opportunity to affirm and honor who you are as well. There is much that you can learn from each other, so seize the day (or hour and a half)!

All in all, we can hit play a million times and fall in love with the bantering back and forth between Jimmy and Nicole because the ending wasn’t really tragic. They are both living happily ever after, each with their amazing spouses and children. And the Jimmy Fallon we totally adore on The Tonight Show is beautifully growing into his own skin. He absolutely loves his wife and little girls, and has gone through trials that have shaped the core of who he is. As I’m discovering more about him, I appreciate the depth of his humanity and the way he searches for joy in the most important treasures a heart can ever hold.


Now you can only imagine what those talks will be like between Jimmy and his daughters when they are of “dating age”.

Jimmy: “Did he talk much? What was he wearing? Does he know that Brie cheese and corn chips don’t really go together? Do you want to invite him over to play video games?”

Winnie Rose & Frances Cole: “Daaaad…”

On a side note: I just read a touchingly candid interview with Jimmy saying that he and his wife Nancy suffered from 5 years of infertility, and Nicole Kidman also shared openly about her infertility as mentioned in this article. What started as a spark for this post took a turn into the realm of my work as a Creighton Model FertilityCare Practitioner, and it made me appreciate more deeply the blessing that NaProTECHNOLOGY has become for infertile couples. No need for surrogates, donor eggs or sperm, IVF, and the like. There is another way, and Hollywood needs to know about it just as much as anybody else… #spreadtheword #naprotechnology

UNFROZEN / VALOR come to HFYA Artesia!

Holy Family Young Adults brings you…UNFROZEN_VALOR

UNFROZEN: “Being The One Worth Melting For” by Marianne Soratorio Dyogi (As He Loves Ministries)

Monday, Feb. 10, 2013 @ 7:30pm

Holy Family Catholic Church (JOHN PAUL II ROOM – next to Parish Hall)

18708 Clarkdale Avenue, Artesia, California 90701

All too often we get caught up in looking for Mr./Ms. Right. Without a significant other, we sometimes feel incomplete and devalued as we long for that special someone to come along and sweep us off our feet. Yet even when we have what we want, loneliness and isolation can still set in. Marianne takes the powerful themes of the Disney movie “Frozen” and breaks down the importance of personal dignity, self-love, and sacrifice…all necessary for a fruitful relationship with ourselves, our God, and those given to us to love.

*** SPECIAL NOTE: In order to fully appreciate the lessons in this talk, it is highly advisable to see “Frozen” prior to attending. If this is not possible, please be aware that UNFROZEN will be jam-packed with references that may put a damper on your future movie-watching experience. Can’t say we didn’t warn you…

****if you’re available FEB 24, Mon. please join HFYA for VALOR: “Made for a Mission- To Protect Her, To Love Her, To Serve Her” PART 2 (Gary Rosete Dyogi) talk, same location/same time. Special 2-part series offers understanding from both FEMALE and MALE perspectives.

*For speaker bio, please visit


GENTLEMEN! After Marianne’s “courtship vs. dating” talk last year, many of you wanted to hear her husband’s perspective on things?
Well, HERE it is!
ALL are invited to join HFYA for PART 2 (of special 2-part) series.
GOD’S LOVE: Courtship Vs. Dating. Special talk titled:
VALOR: “Made for a Mission- To Protect Her, To Love Her, To Serve Her” by Gary Rosete Dyogi (As He Loves Ministries)

Monday, Feb. 24, 2013 @ 7:30pm

Holy Family Catholic Church (JOHN PAUL II ROOM – next to Parish Hall)

18708 Clarkdale Avenue, Artesia, California 90701

A man’s boyhood struggles can lead to young adulthood challenges in faith, relationships, and self-worth. But from these challenges comes a discovery of his potential to LOVE. From this discovery arises a new beginning in life of being faithful to God, faithful to his wife, and faithful to his family. Through it all, the virtue that keeps him committed to this mission is VALOR.
Learn how faith, love, and chivalry prepare a man to answer God’s call to marriage for a lifetime.

**if you’re available FEB 10, Mon. please join HFYA for UNFROZEN: “Being the One Worth Melting For” PART 1 (Marianne Soratorio Dyogi) talk, same location/same time. Special 2-part series offers understanding from both FEMALE and MALE perspectives.

*For Gary’s bio, please visit

Love Language

I happened to stumble upon a remake of this video earlier this week, and it totally melted my heart.  Mind you, when I was younger I’d never been one to gravitate to sappy stories because I grew up watching Star Wars and Voltron, but ever since I fell into my own love story I’ve grown to appreciate displays of real authentic love and the heroic pursuit of a woman’s heart.

What may be seen by most as huge obstacles in a relationship are accepted and fully embraced…and even still seen as BEAUTIFUL.

Watch this…you’ll see what I mean.


“Only once in your life, I truly believe, you find someone who can completely turn your world around. You tell them things that you’ve never shared with another soul and they absorb everything you say and actually want to hear more. You share hopes for the future, dreams that will never come true, goals that were never achieved and the many disappointments life has thrown at you. When something wonderful happens, you can’t wait to tell them about it, knowing they will share in your excitement. They are not embarrassed to cry with you when you are hurting or laugh with you when you make a fool of yourself. Never do they hurt your feelings or make you feel like you are not good enough, but rather they build you up and show you the things about yourself that make you special and even beautiful. There is never any pressure, jealousy or competition but only a quiet calmness when they are around. You can be yourself and not worry about what they will think of you because they love you for who you are. The things that seem insignificant to most people such as a note, song or walk become invaluable treasures kept safe in your heart to cherish forever. Memories of your childhood come back and are so clear and vivid it’s like being young again. Colours seem brighter and more brilliant. Laughter seems part of daily life where before it was infrequent or didn’t exist at all. A phone call or two during the day helps to get you through a long day’s work and always brings a smile to your face. In their presence, there’s no need for continuous conversation, but you find you’re quite content in just having them nearby. Things that never interested you before become fascinating because you know they are important to this person who is so special to you. You think of this person on every occasion and in everything you do. Simple things bring them to mind like a pale blue sky, gentle wind or even a storm cloud on the horizon. You open your heart knowing that there’s a chance it may be broken one day and in opening your heart, you experience a love and joy that you never dreamed possible. You find that being vulnerable is the only way to allow your heart to feel true pleasure that’s so real it scares you. You find strength in knowing you have a true friend and possibly a soul mate who will remain loyal to the end. Life seems completely different, exciting and worthwhile. Your only hope and security is in knowing that they are a part of your life.”
― Bob Marley