SAN DIEGO — By any measure, Scott Weeman seems contented.
All of the pieces of his life seem to have fallen into alignment.
The 31-year-old is a newlywed, just married in September. He enjoys the love of his family and a supportive community of friends. He has found fulfillment in a rewarding ministry. And he recently finished his first book, which will be published in late 2017.
What a difference five years makes!
Flashback to Oct. 9, 2011, when Weeman had hit bottom and, in a long-distance call to his parents and a few remaining close friends, admitted that he needed help.
He had gone through “nine years of darkness,” enslaved by an alcohol and drug addiction that damaged some of his closest relationships, cost him a full-tuition college scholarship, and resulted in two DUIs and several underage drinking citations. Even after making the decision to sober up, he doubted whether he would ever be able to make up all the years he had wasted.
“What’s funny is that … I thought that my life was over at the young age of 26 … and that really the rest of my life would be playing catch-up,” he said.
But, as it turned out, that wasn’t the case at all.
“God has awoken me to believe … that I can use my dark past as a great asset to help others,” said Weeman, founder of the nonprofit organization Catholic in Recovery.
Started in spring 2015 as nothing more than a blog, it received its nonprofit status this past April. The organization’s roots can be traced back to a discovery that Weeman made shortly after embracing sobriety, when he began attending meetings for recovering alcoholics and simultaneously getting more actively involved in the Church.
“I found that the spiritual principles that were at the foundation” of both the Church and addiction recovery programs “were really the same tenets,” he said.
Catholic in Recovery offers addiction recovery resources within the context of Catholic spirituality and “the life-giving sacraments of the Church,” he explained.
The organization has collaborated with parishes and schools, enabling them to improve their outreach to those struggling with any form of addiction, whether alcohol, drugs, pornography, sex, gambling or food.
The Web site CatholicInRecovery.com, which Weeman said has more than 1,000 visitors each month, is home to a blog as well as a host of resources for those seeking help and encouragement on their path to recovery.
Weeman speaks at parishes throughout the Diocese of San Diego and blogs on the Web site about once or twice a month.