We had a breakthrough today! Today I received an award of distinction for trailblazing work with Serenity Sisters’ confrontation of myths about prostitution. The award is from the Hopkins Charity Foundation and is the OLDEST scholarship award in the United States!! Yes, it was established before the US was founded. I received a “Hopkins Shareholder Award” and in centuries past this might have been paid out with sheep or chickens but now it will be a check to defray financial aid in the Fall – so very welcome!
The Harvard Divinity School surveys students in the 2nd year doing progressive field work and six of us are chosen. It is an award that forecasts promise in ministry. I wrote my short bio statement that was read out loud. It went from success with surfing but always seeing the parallel story of women in prostitution, including myself, around the beach culture and SoCal overall. That was my world. Roads seeking change led here to HDS.
Professor Paulsell read my bio while I stood. It was not easy to hear the words spoken in that great grand hall: that I was also a woman in prostitution wanting out – but this was my experience and not my identity. It was push back time! It was a symbolic move to speak it! My plan is to demythologize prostitution. Gotta say it!
Huge supportive response!! When it was socializing time, some trustees wanted to help with funding. I received more encouragement to publish.
I felt like I hammered a peg into a granite cliff – to help hoist other sisters up – we are going to make it! We must speak it! Face the Shame that would silence us! No more!
I spoke the words of freedom in Harvard’s University Hall. They will not be taken back.