What Ignited the Sarah’s Tent Journey?

A woman has her head laying down between her arms, on her desk. She is surrounded by paperwork.
Early AOL logo from 1991

Just as the Internet was beginning to bud in 1996, our church family shattered in unbelievable chaos.

Entering the AOL Chat rooms I sought out pastors who could explain to me the devastation in our church as well as the confusing behaviors of our beloved members.

Every pastor I contacted, logged off from the conversation the minute they heard our story. No explanation from any of them for their hasty exit. Puzzled by the consistency of this reaction, I continued searching for answers.
With each pastor’s wife that I met, it became glaringly clear that the answers I was seeking, were not being addressed, as they too were asking the same questions.
As a response to this need, I began a newsletter and community website for pastors’ wives and women in ministry to connect, and share resources, experiences, and wisdom. We named this community Sarah’s Tent.
In 2007, a TIME magazine article on the challenges of pastors’ wives, mentioned Sarah’s Tent in addressing the needs of women in ministry.
With this incredible birds-eye view into the personal lives of pastors, I quickly saw definite patterns of illness, self-defeating behaviors, beliefs, and the same stories of despair and chaos that had destroyed our church. Same stories … just different names and faces.
Pastors’ families suffered financially as they devoted their lives to serving others while denying themselves. There had to be an answer!
Thus began my journey to find the much-needed resources to facilitate life, wellness, and business savvy while pursuing the Call of God in ministering to the lost.
Sexual Addictions and Food Addictions were surprisingly common as were distinct puzzling and recurring health issues that manifested among these faithful men and women.
Confidentiality and anonymity were a huge benefit of this Internet-based community and facilitated the discovery of counseling, support, and resources for these vulnerable and burned-out ministers normally unavailable in a secure and private setting.
A pastor has his head down and is praying in an empty sanctuary.
This Internet journey to help and encourage pastors’ wives began in 1997. It is now 2024 as I write this blog post. The stories I’ve experienced and encountered from other pastors’ wives are unbelievable – and too common. I will share more stories of unbelievable experiences through future blog posts, especially in online chats to give hope and share the lessons. Everything has a lesson!
My life is devoted to helping women find answers to confusing behaviors of those we hold dear, and especially, ourselves. The expectations put upon a minister are unrealistic and oppressive, and at the same time stroke egos, while holding them captive. It’s quite the setup.
People in ministry need to talk to others who are in ministry and understand the challenges of helping others to heal while addressing their healing journey as well. Conversations that only someone who is behind the scenes in the lives of many must be had. 
If you are someone who would benefit from frank, safe, and insightful conversations with others who know this path, then I encourage you to SUBSCRIBE to be notified of special online chats for ministry women in addition to being notified of events and dates for Circles Journey Groups.

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