Each year I look forward to Easter for many reasons. This year, I have the opportunity to share a story about a child at Yellowstone Boys and Girls Ranch who has been blessed with a transformative experience thanks to the Ranch’s Spiritual Life Program.
“Carrie”* is one of the young ladies residing at Yellowstone Boys and Girls Ranch, receiving intensive psychiatric care. I’ll spare you the details of how Carrie came into the Ranch’s care, but suffice it to say, they would break your heart. Carrie has now been diagnosed as “Seriously Emotionally Disturbed.”
Although she had her reservations, a few weeks ago Carrie chose to attend the Winter Camp put on by the Ranch’s Young Life chapter. Like the other kids, she had a blast with all the fun activities Winter Camp provides. But she also sat quietly through several of the spiritually-based talks spread throughout the 3-day camp.
A few days after the camp, Steve (a chaplain at the Ranch) was leading a Bible study in one of the girls’ lodges on campus. He noticed Carrie slip in but didn’t say anything.
Afterward, Carrie approached Steve and asked if they could talk. She whispered that she had always considered herself an atheist, spiritually, but she couldn’t shake the sense that God was calling out to her in the days following the Winter Camp. Carrie asked for a Bible, which Steve gladly provided, along with selected scriptures he thought might help Carrie begin to understand what she was feeling. Carrie has since joined the Bible study group and is showing remarkable insight into how she believes God can help with her healing at the Ranch.
Thanks to Yellowstone’s Spiritual Life Program, Carrie’s eyes, ears and heart were opened to God’s unconditional grace and love. Carrie will soon be ready to leave the Ranch. She will be missed, but we rejoice in knowing that she will be taking her new relationship with God with her.
The Spiritual Life Program at the Ranch is completely voluntary. The kids can hear the gospel message each week at Chapel service, participate in small Bible study groups, and receive one-on-one mentoring as they choose.
Funding for the Spiritual Life Program comes entirely from caring donors like you. Please know that 100% of any financial support you can provide will go directly to sustaining the Spiritual Life Program at the Ranch. Please send your best gift today!
In addition to financial support, Carrie and other hurting children at Yellowstone Boys and Girls Ranch need the power of your prayers. Please reflect on these recent prayer requests, in the kids’ own words:
• Please help me get better and to learn how to do good…please help me change.
• Pray that people in my life stop hurting me.
• Please pray for me to find a home before April. Pray I’ll like it. Pray for my peers.
• Please pray that my visit with my dad goes well and that I don’t runaway during it.
• Pray for my family and my life and my treatment and love.
Easter is a season of hope, restoration and change. Your gifts go so far in helping Yellowstone Boys and Girls Ranch offer that kind of hope and help to hurting children.
From the bottom of our hearts, we thank you. For the kids,
Bill Hritsco, President
*Name and photo changed to ensure confidentiality.