-Teresa Willoughby

I can’t believe the Grace-on-the-Hill program is over!  I am so blessed to have been part of this admirable program during its innovative year.   It has been such an incredibly emotionally and spiritually uplifting experience!  I have grown exponentially.  I am still the passionate, compassionate, random, open, unique person I’ve always been but I feel even more like me because I feel more peace and confidence.  I see beauty in life and other people on a level that I couldn’t quite fathom before.  I see a little part of myself in each and every person.   I have such an appreciation for the deep complexity of each person’s individuality and distinct contribution to the world as well as the harmony within and unity of humanity.

I feel a sense of home here in Oregon Hill.  Never have I ever experienced such a welcoming neighborhood.  I feel so connected to St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church’s parishioners, the staff members at Pine Street Baptist Church, the recipients of the homeless services at Pine Street, the people I’ve worked with at William Byrd Community House, Byrd House Farmers Market’s vendors and the people I’ve met through neighborhood pot lucks and random occurrences in this lovely neighborhood.   It would pain me so much to leave but I keep an open mind and will go wherever life leads me.   I have signed a temporary residential lease for a home right here in Oregon Hill!  I am still eagerly looking for nearby work.   It would mean so much to me to stay and hope to in a more ongoing manner.  I’m going to miss Megan-Drew and Vincent so much!  I cherish the memories we share and I am excited for them and their future endeavors.  I can’t wait to meet the new Grace-on-the-Hill residents.  Regardless of where I end up, I will always have a special place in my heart for Oregon Hill.

My most profound conviction of honoring the dignity of every person resonates within me.  My devotion to social justice and commitment to meaningful vocation has only become stronger.  I look forward to continuing to grow wherever I go.

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