by Elise Daly Parker
“The things that matter stay with you, seep into your skin…”
Orphan Train by Christina Baker Kline is the fictional account of a very real movement that brought homeless children from American Eastern cities by train to the Midwest and West. The intention was to offer homeless and abandoned children a fresh start and given a chance of being welcomed into new families. “Orphan trains” carried more than 200,000 children across the country from 1854 to 1929. Once they reached their new homes, many of the children were provided for and eventually adopted, while others were treated harshly, like little more than indentured servants; an extra body, a pair of hands to help with work on the farm.
Christina Baker Kline’s story chronicles the life of a young girl, Niamh, an Irish immigrant living in the tenements of New York City. The lone survivor of a family apartment fire, Niamh is brought by a neighbor to The Children’s Aid Society, one of the agencies that took orphans in and arranged their transport and placement. Alone, with no connection to any living family member, Niamh boards the Orphan Train bound for Minnesota with about 20 other children. Continue Reading...
by Diana Jones
Last month, I shared with you how God inspired me to write a letter to my younger self.
Have you ever wondered what you would say to the younger you, if you had the opportunity to write a letter with the perspective you have today?
What would you say? How would you say it?
Dear Diana – Age 15
There’s so much I want to say to you but don’t know where to start. Continue Reading...
by Susan Panzica
"So after you have suffered a little while, He will restore, support, and strengthen you, and He will place you on a firm foundation." 1 Peter 5:10
This verse above was how I ended my last post - a post about rubbish being restored. Who knew? Who knew what devastation was to occur within 36 hours of that post? Only God.
It's hard, no it’s impossible, for me to hold it together seeing the images and hearing the stories from Oklahoma. The children. The destruction. The seeming randomness of it all. Why were some spared while others were obliterated?
Here in New Jersey, we had similar experiences at the hand of Hurricane Sandy. Seven months ago, total destruction randomly meted out. Continue Reading...
We all have a story to tell! Personal Connection is just one of the ways we share stories here at Circles of Faith. Ordinary women are doing extraordinary things for God. We hope Noelle’s story encourages and inspires others to take that next step toward what God is calling them to do.
IN OUR SPOTLIGHT THIS MONTH IS
Circles of Faith contributor Noelle Rhodes
My story is not uncommon. I was born and raised in church. I did a lot of “church things” with a lot of nice “church people.” My childhood would not make a very good Lifetime made-for-television movie. It wasn’t perfect, but I was loved.
Perhaps that is why it took me so dang long to realize that I needed “saving” from anything. I wasn’t beaten. I wasn’t drug dealing. I didn’t live in poverty. I went to church and didn’t smoke. So, why did I need Jesus? Continue Reading...