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Speaking Engagements

"Love Rises:" Pentecost Sermon, May 2016

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"We are this beautiful gift of God, given to this world to bear witness of what love looks like."--Becca

On May 15, 2016, Becca shared a sermon on Pentecost with the congregation of Marble Collegiate Church. As you watch the video below, we hope you feel inspired by love.

 

Thank you to Pastor Brown and your community for hosting Thistle Farms.

Original Recording Credit: Marble Congregational Church Original Image Credit: Pixabay.com

Views from the Farm: Speaking Trip to Montgomery, Alabama

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This is a guest post by one of the amazing assistants, Jordan, who is reflecting on his first time being out on the road with the Thistle Farms travel crew. He is way too kind---but his tender words are a gift to those still searching for their place in the circle. Peace, Becca,

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I must say that now having a trip under my belt I feel ever so slightly more official in my Thistle Farmer status...

During the first week of May 2016, I had the great opportunity to head down to Montgomery, Alabama--my first time in that city as well--with Susan, Jennifer and Rita. We met Becca, who was coming from another engagement, down there. Along the way, we made the obligatory fast food stop, listened to NPR, reflected on our journeys thus far, and enjoyed the blessing of extending love's great reach to even more hearts and minds. Without question, some of the most important work that a Thistle Farmer can do is speak her truth, and the fact that so many events and organizations make space for us to do that is testament to why we all fell in love with love from the first time we lit a Thistle Farms candle, heard Becca speak, or worked in service to the amazing women who are changing the course of their destiny with each success they have in recovery.

Of course, for me, one of the highlights of the whole experience was hearing Becca give a keynote. Speaking about the power of "Acting Globally, Helping Locally," the Boss did what she does well: combined humor, compassion, insight, conviction, and hope into a journey that her audience thoroughly enjoyed taking with her as they learned about why the movement to end human trafficking locally must be global. While there are many things that stood out for me in hearing these truths once more, I was personally convicted by hearing Becca talk about the fact that she's never taken a salary for her work with Thistle Farms:

"I offer this work up as a free gift, for this community and in gratitude for all the mercy that people have shown me in my life."

That wasn't my first time encountering such a sweet truth that undergirds the foundation of all that we do at Thistle Farms--this lavishness of love--but it was the first time that I was able to make such a personal connection to the message behind it. There has yet to be a day when I haven't been blessed in some way by being in service to this community. Even looking back on my internship back in 2011, something about Becca's work called to me then, and such a calling ultimately brought me back to that stretch of earth on Charlotte Avenue in Nashville, TN where the ground is bursting forth with the unfolding promise of love as the most powerful force for social change.

As such, I feel the gift that Becca has extended to me in taking me under her mentorship, and I feel the path unfolding before all of us as we strive to create a national housing-first network in all 50 states over the next few years. Accordingly, I conclude this entry with sincere thanks, not only for the opportunity to have traveled, but for being welcomed back into this circle when I needed it more than I ever realized.

With love, Jordan

Original image credit: pixabay.com

"The Spirituality of Hope:" Visiting Christ Church Charlotte

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god has carried me through, and he has taken me out of bondage. and now, it's like i can live. i can live. i can hope. i can dream. i can tell our story. and i can help the next woman that's out there--who felt the same way i felt. and, i am able connect with her on a deeper level because of my experience, strength and hope. and the dream continues. that makes it worth living because i'm a survivor, not a victim. anika

when i started magdalene, i didn't know that my own story had anything to do with why i was drawn to women on the streets. i mean, that's just kind of how our ministry goes, and the idea of the wounded healer that comes out is that your heart is open to compassion when you get a sense of the grace that comes your way...i was going to the streets to meet part of myself and to be about that story having a better ending for a lot of the women. becca

we were so pleased to visit christ church charlotte in charlotte, nc last month and take part in their faith forum. please click on the link below to hear some powerful and healing words from becca, anika, and mary stuart. thank you rev. chip edens and your entire congregation!