At first, the striking similarities in the Rev. Peter Manning and Garth Wingfield’s life paths made for fun first-date fodder. And then the parallels became too pronounced to chalk up to coincidence.
When Mr. Manning first matched with Mr. Wingfield on the dating app Hinge in March 2022, he discovered that they had long run in similar theater circles in New York City, and that the two had recently felt calls to pursue ordained ministry.
He then told Mr. Wingfield that he had recently completed the spiritual exercises of St. Ignatius, an intense series of prayers and spiritual work designed to help Christians deepen their relationships with God. He didn’t expect Mr. Wingfield to be familiar with the niche practice.
“He said, ‘Oh, I did those last year,’” said Mr. Manning, now 56. “I distinctly remember thinking to myself: ‘OK, Manning. Don’t screw this up. He’s definitely the only person on Hinge who did the Ignatian spiritual exercises last year and wants to talk about it.’”