Transitions are a constant part of life, especially at Maggie’s Place.
If you are like me, you probably have a bittersweet relationship with change. On the one hand, change brings unexplored adventures, opportunities and relationships; on the other hand, it brings different challenges, struggles and sorrow. Change can be exciting, refreshing and absolutely terrifying, all at the same time.
“The Lord gives and the Lord takes away. Blessed be the name of the Lord.” (Job 1:21)
One of the most difficult changes is when we have to say goodbye to someone we love.
Maggie’s Place is a community of hospitality, service and love. However, it is not a permanent situation for anyone involved. Just like life in general people are constantly coming in and out of each other’s lives. Between the MissionCorps who make a 1-2 year commitment and the moms who move in at any point in pregnancy and can stay 6-9 months after their baby is born, a Maggie’s Place home is constantly in transition.
Last week our house said goodbye to a mom and baby that were a part of Maggie’s Place for a while. Both of them were dearly beloved by many people throughout the community. Although I had only been living with them for two months, it was difficult for me to say goodbye. In preparation for their Candelight, an event where we honor community members who are moving out, I had reflected on all of the things that I will miss about the both of them. Listening to others’ reflections only made me appreciate them all the more.
When I arrived at Maggie’s Place two months ago the community was in the midst of its greatest season of change: summer staff transitions. During the entire summer, new MissionCorps come in and old ones leave to pursue the next step in their journey. This summer the moms and returning Corps had to say goodbye to almost all of last year’s Corps and welcome a whole new batch of new ones.
I can’t imagine how hard it may be for the moms to say goodbye to the MissionCorps who have meant so much to them and been such an important part of their journey, even attending the births of their babies.
Even now, when the dust has settled and summer transitions are over, we are still subject to change. Contrary to my own sensibilities, God’s will is never stagnant. Sometimes He speaks through the leadership asking us to make transitions among houses, welcoming new members and letting those that are a part of our community move on to serve in another one.
But no matter how much we will miss all of these community members, we can always know that they are going off to do bigger and better things. Maggie’s Place is not permanent for a reason – it is a place of growth. Much like the babies do while they are growing in their mother’s wombs, every member of the Maggie’s Place community is constantly growing and reaching new milestones as they prepare to be born into the outside world.
There are only two constants at Maggie’s Place: love and change. Both are blessings that I am grateful for, no matter how difficult they may be.
By Dominique Lefaive, a MissionCorps member