My whole life changed one December day while I was speaking with my girlfriend.

Like many Americans, I wanted to make a New Year's resolution that'd make my life better. I thought: "Why not do whatever she's doing for the new year, so we can get closer?" I couldn't believe it when she said, totally serious: "I want to go to Mass every day." 

A cosmic battle was unleashed inside me. On the one side I said to myself, "This is ridiculous!" 
But another voice inside me cautioned: "Hang on a second dummy. Think about this. This girl is beautiful, she's smart, she's funny, she's got a heart of gold and most important she likes you. Do you really want to lose her like this?" So I began to nod my head and said: "Yeahhh, I was thinking about going to Mass too..." 

A short time after this, I began to speak one on one with Sr. Celestina, an Apostle, because I had some questions, doubts, and struggles with my faith, (and truth be told, I wanted to be even closer to my girlfriend!). 
At our first meeting one question just nailed me: "What is the meaning of your life?" 
Strange as it sounds, at 19 years old, I had no idea. It was like entering into a whole new world when I discovered that the answer is: to be happy. 

I began to give God a chance to speak to me every day using a book entitled In Conversation with God. Every day I made a bet with God saying: "Ok, Lord, up till today I did things my way. You say to live the other way. I'll give it a shot, but, you know, you have to do something for me: You gotta make me happier, otherwise, I'm out of here..." 
I'm not kidding, those were my exact words and... It works. I always win. 

After a little while I left my girlfriend because our relationship wasn't giving me the happiness I wanted. 
Pushed by someone, I went on a parish mission with the sisters of the Apostles of the Interior Life. 
Speaking with kids and young people, about Jesus, the meaning of life, love, and seeing their faces, I discovered a happiness I'd never known before. 
After more than a year of experiences like this, I said: "This is my path. I just want to do this... for the rest of my life". 

So I left the cornfields of Illinois and came to Rome to begin this new quest, offering a life full of joy, love, and peace, to people... and every day I make my bet, and every day He makes me a little bit happier...