WNY Catholic News - Archive

St. Gabriel parishioner shares his faith in many ways
Thursday, January 20, 2011 by KATHLEEN JOHNSON
By Patrick McPartland/Staff Photographer - Wayne Wolf with his horse Cowboy also works as a Erie County Sheriff Mounted Patrol Officer.

Living each day in the Catholic faith is very important to Wayne Wolf, parishioner at St. Gabriel Church in Elma. Wolf makes sure he incorporates his faith into the many different facets of his busy life, which include serving as a mounted police lieutenant, instructor and chaplain for the Erie County Sheriff’s Office, working in radio, running two small businesses, volunteering at his parish and being a husband to his wife of 29 years, Maribeth,
“I obviously have many opportunities to, as He asks, ‘Be the Light,’” said Wolf, speaking of God. “It’s not always easy, especially as a mounted deputy, but the Lord gives me patience, the right situations and opportunities to do His work. I try not to be ‘holier than thou’ but gently try to be Christ’s ambassador. Working mainly for the country station also gives me many chances to share in the faith due to the fact that many country songs are so faith driven. Sometimes the song says it all.”
As a relatively new Catholic, Wolf is excited about making his faith an integral part of his many careers.
“I became a Catholic three and a half years ago as the Holy Spirit called upon me for a variety of reasons, mainly because I knew the Catholic Church would never waver from its Biblical principles,” said Wolf. “My faction of Lutheran (ECLA) had started discussions that in my heart were not biblical. So I have been a member for three and a half years, now help instruct RCIA, but due to my wife’s recent breast cancer haven’t been as active as I would like, but it’s God’s timing, not mine.

Patrick J. McPartland - Wayne Wolf does his show Sunday afternoon at WYRK Radio.

“I would like to pursue the permanent deacon program in the future, but right now I keep pretty busy as a mounted lieutenent/mounted instructor and chaplain with the Erie County Sheriff’s Office. In addition I continue to work part-time in my 35-year radio career under the name Craig Matthews. I was full-time for many years but as the business changed I decided to cut back. Presently I work weekends and fill-in for Country 106.5 WYRK and our sister station 96.1 JOY FM. I also have two small businesses: Pony Xpression, delivering messages and customized gift packages on horseback, and Marilla’s Merlot of Manure, composted horse fertilizer for gardens.”
Wolf and his wife, who live on a 65-acre farm in Marilla with their three horses, three cats and one dog, have been seeking the support of their parish throughout Maribeth’s breast cancer.
“My wife is an RN and is recovering from her breast cancer and the prognosis is good thanks to God and much prayer from so many,” said Wolf. “Father Dan (Palys) and Sister Joseph Marie (Marczak, CSSF) have been great inspirations for me and my Catholic journey, as are many members of St. Gabriel’s, especially from my RCIA teaching team.”
“Wayne went through the RCIA program and has become a devout Catholic,” said Father Palys, pastor at St. Gabriel Parish. “We really appreciate everything he does for the parish. He is an outstanding resource for us.”
Wolf expressed some of the basic beliefs which shape his faith.
“My concern with this world we live in now is the attitude many times that well, times change... I believe that God hasn’t. He is the same today, yesterday and tomorrow. Does my faith get challenged? Of course. Do I question, wonder and sometimes doubt? Yes, I am only human, but I know so deep in my heart that He is the Way, the Truth and the Life, and no one comes before Him except through Christ. My favorite verse (is) ‘I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.’ He also gives me a ‘peace that passes all understanding,’ and He forgives. And Lord knows I need a lot of that … every day!  In closing, I share with you my signature sign off on the radio...”God bless you, God bless America and Never Say Never!”