Mary's Story

Thank you for giving her hope for the future!

My name is Mary. I am 54 years old and I grew up in the South End of Albany.  My father was a gambler and an alcoholic. My mother was from Japan, which caused me to get picked on and my family to not be included. My family was very poor.

Because I did not have any guidance or supervision as a child I would wander the streets. I remember going to Lincoln Park by myself when I was eight.

As a young teenager I was already drinking, smoking pot and hanging out with boys. I experienced a few traumatic events including an attempted kidnapping and these situations left me feeling helpless and alone.

I got married and had five children. My husband was a violent alcoholic. The pain and heartache were overwhelming, I became angry and bitter. I was tired of fighting and thought if I can’t beat him I might as well join him. Then alcohol consumed my world.

As my life spiraled out of control I began seeking God but I wasn’t ready to give my life to Christ. I didn’t want to give up my own power. I continued drinking.

I spent years in a vicious cycle of going to domestic violence shelters, struggling between jobs, trying to get my own apartment and then giving up and going back to my abuser.

Drinking and drugs gave me temporary relief, an escape from the pain. I was completely empty, hopeless and full of despair.

I thought jails, institutions and death were the best I could hope for. I felt guilty about not doing better for my children. I knew I needed real help.

My marriage finally over, I didn’t know what to do. I ended up homeless. I had exhausted all options. Somewhere in my despair Jesus “bumper car’d” me right into Capital City Rescue Mission.

I stayed in the Mission’s emergency shelter for women for several nights. I didn’t know the mission had a recovery program for women and children, I was focused on getting back into rehab.

Instead, I soon joined the New Faith Program for women and children and as I received God’s word through counseling, classes and daily reading; Jesus began to set me free.

The loving staff here taught me how to have healthy boundaries; how to fight for freedom in Christ, allowing Him to create a clean heart in me. Now, for the first time I have hope, real hope. I’m excited for the future.

I want to help other women and share the good news of Jesus Christ. Sometimes I get to help out at the women’s day shelter and that brings me joy.

God’s word says, “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” – 1 Timothy 1:7

Christ has shown me I do not have to be afraid, I am loved, capable and with His help I can learn new things and be successful. I am looking forward to getting my GED. After that my hope is to go to nursing school. I want to be an LPN.

Your support has allowed me the time I needed to connect with God and to heal. I am most thankful for the safe space and beautiful family in Christ God has given me here.

"Jesus has given me freedom!"

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