How Hope & Faith Got Two Young Women Through 10 Years of Captivity and Sexual Abuse

Considering that Amanda Berry and Gina DeJesus were kidnapped, held hostage, abused, and repeatedly sexually assaulted by Cleveland school bus driver Ariel Castro for 10 years, it might seem odd that they named the memoir about their experiences “Hope.” But that is the word that perfectly describes these two young women who endured more darkness [Read More…]

A Vision of Heaven in Central Harlem: iHope Finds Beauty Amid Brokenness

You might expect a school for children who’ve suffered traumatic brain injuries (TBI) to be a sad or somber place, but I found a different reality when I visited the International Academy of Hope (a.k.a iHope) last week. In fact, this converted nightclub above a Conway’s department store on the corner of 116th Street and [Read More…]

Fairy Tales, Deeper Truths, & Illustrating God’s Love for Children (and the Young at Heart)

(All photos and artwork property of Katy Betz Studio.) Like a lot of kids, Katy Betz grew up admiring the illustrations she saw in popular books like “Where the Wild Things Are” and “The Berenstain Bears,” but it wasn’t until a trip to Europe as an 18-year-old college student that she realized she wanted to [Read More…]

How an Elderly Nun Brought Hope, Purpose and Joy to a Young Man at a Crossroads in Life

At the age of 31, John Schlimm was at a crossroads. He had spent his 20s working in public relations for the White House, and then, for country music stars in Nashville. From a worldly perspective, he had it made. Yet, he felt restless and empty, as if there was something deeper that needed to [Read More…]


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