This spring, Shana, Dorris, Becca and Tim went to Elizabethtown College in Pennsylvania. This fall, we received the following letter from one of the students who attended the event where we spoke.
Dear Magdalene Community:
Earlier this year, a few women from the Magdalene community came to Elizabethtown College to talk to us about the Thistle Farms program. I wanted to thank you for informing us about your magnificent program. As an occupational therapy student, I realize the importance and need for a program like Thistle Farms. I know that even when a survivor is out of the immediate troubling situation, it can still affect the individual’s daily life occupations. Areas of work, education, home management, parenting, leisure, and social participation may all be affected.
It was a powerful experience to hear the womens' stories about how far they have come and how much they have grown through the wonderful community of Magdalene. The women of the Magdalene community join hands to provide each other security, protection, and strength. Women from all different lifestyles come together and form this incredible bond and relationship that strengthens each other more each day. They encourage each other to believe in themselves and to recognize they have the opportunity to start a new life. The womens' testimonies of how they survived and intervened with their lives, sheds so much hope to the women just starting out on this journey. The bravery and courage of the women of Magdalene provides gifts of life and growth, which demonstrates more love and respect than anyone could attempt to explain.
To me, the community of Magdalene truly exemplifies continuous love; which speaks volumes to an outsider looking into your community. I love that Thistle Farms program illustrates the beauty, strength, and worth of a woman and expresses how love can conquer everything. Through the unconditional love the Magdalene women have to offer, it conveys the truth that EVERY woman deserves a life filled with gifts; gifts of hope, strength, and love.
I want to acknowledge the womens' hard work and continuous effort throughout their journey. In addition, I need to commend the women on their remarkable strength and devotion to helping their fellow Magdalene members. By overcoming their own personal struggles and obstacles, they are creating a difference not only in their life, but also in the Magdalene community, and in others lives as well. The women of Magdalene community live by way of example of what truly genuine love and support looks like.
Ashton Morgan, MOTS