Vanessa, 2013 Graduate

Before coming to Mercy Canada, life felt unmanageable. Although I was brought up in a very loving family, fear of creating conflict was enough to keep me silent with the secret that I was molested by a relative at a young age. The summer I turned 18 my mother was diagnosed with breast cancer, and she passed away by spring. I developed an eating disorder and partying also became a way for me to escape my emotions.

Eventually I sought out a couple treatment centres for help. At the last treatment centre, I met a girl who introduced me to Mercy Canada and I decided to apply. Even though I didn’t have a relationship with God, I somehow knew that He was the answer.

I arrived at Mercy with very little knowledge of God’s character. Today, I know Him as a Father, friend, and lover. In working through what happened in my past, God began to heal my heart and I experienced freedom from my past hurts. It hurt Him as much as it hurt me, if not more, when I lost my mom, but Jesus filled that void inside my heart, along with the people He brought into my life. I’m also now free from the desire to alter my body weight. I look in the mirror and, even with tired eyes, see myself as more beautiful than ever. I used to think being pretty was of greatest value, but now I know I’m my own unique person who has her own unique beauty.

Life after Mercy has been an adventure. Coming home and learning how to do life in a new way was an adjustment, but I never felt completely hopeless because at Mercy I learned to hear God’s voice and follow His guidance. I also have a supportive and loving church community walking beside me. Today I live so very free and I know that is only because of the kindness of God. Mercy Canada set the foundation for me to experience the fullness of life God desires for me, and for that I will forever be grateful.

To all the supporters and friends of Mercy, thank you so much for all your generosity. If it wasn’t for you, I don’t know where I’d be today. I believe Mercy not only saved my life, but many others who enter that home too. Miracles happen there and they happen because of you. Words cannot express my gratitude.