Goodbye 2017, and hello 2018!
Wow! What a year! I shared with the Redeemed staff this week how fortunate and blessed we have been in 2017, and all because of God’s faithfulness of resources and staff which I believe was one of our best years ever! I have a lot to share with you, so I will provide as much information as I can in the most concise way possible. But first, I want to share a video I watched some time ago on YouTube, which for me communicated the one thing I believe we all can improve on as we move into 2018. As you know, the real work of this ministry and any ministry should always be prayer, but do we pray enough? This video really convicted me, and I hope it blesses you and brings you joy and satisfaction as we all move into 2018. Please watch the video at this link Pray too much?
Thank you for watching this video! I hope you found as much joy and inspiration from it as I did. We can never every pray too much!
As we move into 2018, I have two major announcements to make concerning Redeemed Ministries. First, with much time spent in prayer and discussion, the board of Redeemed Ministries has decided to no longer have a presence in Austin and Dallas. There are two main factors that were critical in making this decision. First factor, the environment in Austin and Dallas has changed since we initially set to expand operations in these cities. At that time, we felt there was a limited presence of organizations that were involved in awareness and engagement at the level we were doing in Houston. Also the desire to seek out potential opportunities for future safe house operations and other areas of growth where we could expand operations to include these cities and create models for growth to other locations as well. We began with awareness and outreach in both cities with positive results. Since that time, this environment has changed and now local organizations have come along who do very similar work in all the areas we were working to grow and expand.
Second factor, the desire and purpose of Redeemed Ministries is to be committed to quality– being a quality organization providing quality care to survivors of exploitation. We have learned quality comes from focus and discerning, like focusing on and discerning the will of God, focusing and discerning our mission and purpose, and focusing and discerning what is valuable to be learned and taught. Bonnie Martin, after evaluating our program one year, spoke to me about the importance of understanding what growth is in this type of work. It is not Redeemed Ministries opening safe houses all over the country, but teaching others from our experiences and methodologies to open safe houses in their communities. And this work requires quality, not quantity! (Thank you Bonnie!)
With that, we at Redeemed Ministries came to the realization our desire to grow and provide quality care could not include remote branches. It is the right time to consolidate all of our energy and resources to the safe house in Houston where we can create a unique opportunity for education and growth. So thank you ALL who have been faithful committed partners in Austin and Dallas. There are too many names to mention, but everyone knows as we do, that without you ALL doing your part, Redeemed Ministries would not be the ministry it is today! And a very warm thank you to Calli, Tiffany, Elle, Maddie and Kelli!
This leads me to my second announcement. Effective January 15, 2018, Bobbie and I will no longer be serving in the safe house except as relief for other staff as needed. We have been actively engaged in the safe house since its opening in 2010, and the safe house is a big part of our identity and understanding to all of the ups and downs of this work. It has been our heart, which makes it so difficult. But as I said earlier, it is the right time. So, Elle Mitchell, former Austin Operations Director will be changing roles and moving to Houston to become our new Director of Residential Living in the safe house. She will be using her skills and knowledge working along side India Rhodes, Program Director to continue our excellent program. This decision is a hard one, but for the growth of the ministry and to ensure sustainability moving forward, it is the right one.
We will now solely be focusing on our primary responsibilities as Executive Director and Director of Survivor Care which will provide opportunities for the continued development of quality care with an emphasis on education. We will be able to provide a great environment for teaching our staff and others the necessary and important aspects of this work to ensure quality care is offered to the women we serve. One of the goals for us in the future is to develop a very hands-on training environment through internships for undergraduate and post-graduate work to get experiential knowledge of safe house management and operations. Again, thank you all for your support and prayers to make all this possible for Redeemed Ministries.
God is faithful and true, His promises never fail, and we are committed to bringing Him honor and glory. 2018, we’re ready!
God’s blessings on you all in 2018!