By Missy Ward-Angalla
A few weeks ago I had the privilege of attending the graduation at our women’s shelter. Walking into the shelter, I could feel their energy and excitement as the women proudly wore their graduation caps and gowns. As I looked across the room, I saw Benita with a huge smile on her face. I remember meeting her seven months before, when she first arrived in our program with her 1-year-old baby. She was only 18 years old. She had been orphaned and abandoned by her family. She lost hope and felt in despair. She shared that it was first at the shelter that she came back to life. While living in a safe home and walking alongside a community of staff who loved her, Benita was able to do the courageous work of healing through the counseling and therapy sessions.
She was able to learn practical vocational skills that she can use to provide for herself and her small daughter. Through the group therapy and evening discipleship program, she realized that God loved her and created her with a purpose. On graduation day, she stood tall, proud, her heart full of hope and joy. She shared, “Before coming to the shelter, I thought I was nothing.” She took a deep breath and with tears in her eyes, she looked at me and said “Now I know that I am something. I am wonderfully made by God. I know that I am loved. I know I have a bright future ahead of me.”
Missy Ward-Angalla serves as a Cooperative Baptist Fellowship field personnel in Kampala, Uganda. Missy and her husband Francis serve as the co-directors of Amani Sasa Ministries. Learn more about Missy and her ministry at www.cbf.net/ward.