I made a decision to follow Christ at age 9 years and was baptized at that time. When I was a child I attended worship with my family & children’s church classes and youth group. I attended Young Life events at my high school in the tumultuous late 1960’s-early 1970’s. Through my college years I was not active in a church or campus Christian group. I recall that God’s love and my faith in Him were deeply rooted in me, but I did not demonstrate my walk with Christ in my college and early adult years. I returned to a community of faith in the city of Chicago at age 29 when I began dating and then marrying Tom. We served together in an urban church in the Uptown neighborhood of Chicago, a very low income community of international refugees and a very low income African-American community. I also worked as a pediatric nurse in a hospital in a very low income community of Chicago. My faith prominently collided with my work as I cared for ill children whose parents were struggling with the many challenges that deep poverty brings. Those opportunities in the urban church and hospital are what strengthened my relationship with Christ & have greatly influenced my Christian journey. When we moved to Pittsburgh in 1986, Tom and I served in an American Baptist Church for 23 years. I was blessed to serve many individuals and families as a deacon and a children’s ministry teacher. We served in a homeless shelter in Pittsburgh and advocated for homeless single mothers & their children in our local community. I served many friends and families in the local church who were experiencing difficult life transitions.
I believe in being attentive to individual passion in making life decisions. I believe that responding to a heart-felt passion is a way of responding to the Holy Spirit. This is how I have chosen jobs in my pediatric nursing career: “I have always sought jobs doing what I am passionate about”. I have served and partnered with vulnerable low income families who have very young children since 1977. I have been in more homes than I can count in gang-filled and impoverished communities of Pittsburgh, Chicago, and more recently in highly-stressed, very- low-income homes of Boulder County. I have the gift of a quiet, calm, reflective presence with vulnerable, hurting families. I am able to hear someone’s life stories with compassion and without judgment. I am passionate about building caring relationship with individuals, so that they can know someone is walking alongside them as they figure out their own next small step toward their own identified goal/objective.
Tom and I have attended Discovery for five years. Tom and I coordinate the many Discovery volunteers for hosting families who are homeless in collaboration with our local community partner, Growing Home. It seems that my Christian journey is rooted in the theme of serving through relationship. By serving others through a relationship, I stay drawn to Christ and filled spiritually. I hope to share that gift of compassionate serving with the leadership team, staff and those who enter the doors of Discovery.