|Letter from the Vice President—Samantha Nelson|
(From the January 2015 edition of HopeSpeak)
Dear Hope of Survivors Family,
“But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible.”—Matthew 19:26
That seems to be what the Lord continues to tell us throughout the history of The Hope of Survivors. From 2002 when we first began researching, writing and developing the website; to 2013 when the long-prayed-for Renewal Center became a reality; through the staffing challenges of 2014; to today—God is in control and He will enable us to overcome all the seemingly insurmountable difficulties. That’s something for which we praise Him daily because, without God, we could do nothing!
It is a reality that Satan is actively seeking to destroy pastors, church members, congregations and even ministries like The Hope of Survivors—perhaps especially ministries like The Hope of Survivors. He attempts to infiltrate congregations and ministries with those who appear to be Christlike but who are, in reality, ravening wolves (Matthew 7:15). The Hope of Survivors was not immune to Satan’s attacks last year. Thankfully, God answered our many pleas for help and protected His ministry.
There were many valuable lessons learned last year. For example, we found it is virtually impossible for us to manage all the needs of the Renewal Center without help, and help (all too often) costs a lot of money that The Hope of Survivors doesn’t have.
We also learned group programs are not as conducive to healing for victims of clergy sexual abuse, as are one-on-one programs, so we have now limited our in-house programs to private programs. That means fewer victims being served in-house at one time, but it also means more personal attention and support for each one. Additionally, it means we may prayerfully consider relocating to a smaller, more affordable facility, in another area where perhaps we might find more options for qualified staff as well. Please join us in prayer to see how God chooses to lead in the matter.
All that being said, God has blessed and opened many doors for The Hope of Survivors, and 2015 is one of the most active years ever in terms of seminars, speaking engagements, new product development and outreach. Glory to God! The Hope of Survivors is not about Steve and Samantha—it is and always has been about Jesus—the Hope of every survivor of clergy sexual abuse. Our commitment remains the same—to provide each victim of clergy sexual abuse the best spiritual and emotional support possible.
Managing a global ministry like The Hope of Survivors takes a lot of prayer, time, effort and means. Steve and I can’t do it on our own, nor can we do all God has called us to do without the help of many volunteers and staff members. So, we would encourage you to pray for us, for each of our volunteers, staff and board members, for the work The Hope of Survivors is doing around the world, for the victims being served, and for the right people to come alongside us and hold up our arms, as did Aaron and Hur for Moses in the battle with the Amalekites. (Exodus 17:12)
Thank you so much for your love, prayers and support!
God bless you,