In 2018, AGAPE expanded its footprint for serving others with the healing love of Christ by adopting the Morning Star Sanctuary Domestic Violence Shelter and Program. This ministry has grown and changed over the past year, and it wouldn't be what it is today without our dedicated team members. One of the employees who has played an integral part in the success of this program is Rachel Herman. Rachel joined AGAPE in September 2018 as the Children's Program Manager and now serves as the Residential Program Manager. We recently asked Rachel a few questions about her work at Morning Star.
What's your favorite part of the job?
I love getting the opportunity to provide hope to people and be a part of seeing God rewrite their stories. We see women and children come into the shelter being told and shown they are not worthy of love. As staff, we get to show and tell them a greater truth! We get to show them they are worth investing in and that their life matters. My favorite part is when it finally clicks to them that they are loved and worthy. When someone understands their life matters, they can start making changes in their life.
What about your work might surprise people?
What seems to surprise people is that a significant portion of the Morning Star program is funded by the federal government. We collaborate with many agencies and governmental officials when working with the victims we serve. Morning Star staff also serve on several committees and panels in the community that address issues that directly impact domestic and interpersonal violence in the community. Morning Star not only provides shelter for victims of domestic violence, but we also have staff who work nights and weekends at the Family Safety Center assisting victims with Orders of Protection.
What motivates you?
Every day we have the opportunity to see miracles happen right in front of us! These miracles can be small or large, but it is truly amazing to see people choose freedom and break away from cycles of abuse and trauma. The women we serve inspire me! They demonstrate so much courage and bravery by choosing to walk away from those abusive relationships. We get to come alongside them and deposit hope in their lives. Although there can be hard days in this job, the reward far outweighs them!
What have you learned since joining Morning Star?
I have learned that it takes a community of people working together to meet the needs of victims. We each play our part, and we are far better together than apart. I have learned so much from the Morning Star staff over this past year. We each represent a beautiful facet of who God is!
Do you have a favorite memory working at Morning Star?
One of my favorite memories at Morning Star is sitting at the dining room table with one of the women, helping her discover her dreams and goals and how she can achieve them. Another favorite is working with one of the mothers and helping her develop nurturing parenting skills and empowering her to establish a stronger connection with her children!
What do you like to do for fun?
I love traveling and experiencing new places and cultures! I also love doing outdoor activities like hiking and kayaking. Anything that has to do with adventure sounds like fun to me!
Tell us a little about your family.
I grew up in a Christian home. Both of my parents were involved in ministry; my father was a pastor, and my mother was a teacher and children’s pastor. I saw firsthand what it looked like to serve the Lord through the example of my parents. I have an older brother and sister-in-law with a one-year-old niece!
To learn more about Morning Star Sanctuary, click here.