In late January, we are relaunching The Voices Project. A blog initiative of Conversations on the Fringe that will share stories of people who are marginalized in our society. Our hope is, these stories will re-humanize people who are often forgotten about and pushed to the fringes of our world. We walk by these people daily in our own journeys but pay little attention to them or their stories.

Karen Bradford-Cassidy will be our primary Story-teller. She works for the Salvation Army and has a ginormous heart for those she encounters in her daily work. She is a gifted writer as well.

Here’s a preview of her first post, coming out next week:

“Yesterday at lunch I had such a powerful moment of clarity. There are times you know you are wearing the shoes you are supposed to wear, so you can walk the road you are supposed to walk.

One of our clients was talking to me with such brutal honesty. He said: “ you can’t see my disability. But it is there. Just like a man in a wheelchair. It takes everything in me, every day to quiet the voices that want to be heard. It is exhausting being me. And Karen, I did not ask to be born this way, and I get so tired, but I know there is a reason.” 

I was so moved and humbled by his honesty. 

Seeing past people’s outside into their hearts and minds, and into their lives is what we are all called to do. Whether you are an officer, a waitress, an attorney, a miner…we are called to hear one another and to “bear with one another.” Mental illness is a powerful force in so many people’s lives…I pray that God will use me always as His eyes to see their struggles and to remind them that they are loved right where they are.”

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