Carolyn Irrera


Hi, my name is Carolyn. I began attending Imago Dei Church about three years ago. I had gone through a difficult time in my life. I had gone through a very long and painful divorce. I had worked at my church for 16 years as a counselor and Recovery Director. My position was eliminated. I also was battling a cancer scare as well — and my Jeep had broken down (again). I felt alone and terrified. I couldn’t think. Through these circumstances, I still loved Jesus, but I had lost my faith in the church. I had lost faith in myself. I did wonder what Jesus was doing. I kept asking Him. I felt like He was saying “hold on” and “hold onto Me.” So, I did. I had heard that Imago was a safe place and a place where there were intelligent discussions. I decided to check it out – sitting in the back. I just kept attending Imago, often crying through the services – in this, there was healing. People at Imago were welcoming and kind. I had my space. I felt Jesus was there.

I had been leading Celebrate Recovery at the other church for 13 years. I asked the Imago leadership team if this could be a ministry here. They said yes! I was able to start Celebrate Recovery in 2016 — we are a small and mighty group. I was also able to volunteer, with my friend Dominic, in other ministries like the three-year-old room and the Breakfast Club, too.

On September 7, 2018, Dominic, my best friend, and I were married in a small family ceremony. He is strong, compassionate, intelligent, generous, and patient. We have great adventures together. He has loved me well. Combining households at this age is nothing short of daunting, but we are finding our way in this journey!

As I look back, losing my previous employment brought great positives for me. I am now employed in an environment where I can care for those who are struggling. I also have greater opportunities to provide for my family. I am in a church where I am cared for and involved in ministries in which I can bring the hope and love of Jesus. I am in a marriage filled with love. I am also physically and emotionally healthier.

Through transitions, I continue to process several questions: How do I stay focused on Jesus? How do I remain resilient while investing in my own self-care? How do I stay connected with those who bring joy to my life? How do I love well?

For me, transitions bring important questions and new opportunities.

Thank you for letting me share.

Carolyn is a counselor. She enjoys spending time with her husband and her daughters. She loves dancing, reading, art, and laughing. She is very curious and has been called the Queen of Questions. She can still be found sitting in the back during Imago Dei church services.

Lindsey Mooberry