Stories of Faith: Steven is grateful & blessed this Thanksgiving

because of your support

You’ve given him hope and new life this holiday!

Steven’s childhood was a painful cycle of heartbreak and grief. When he was just 6 years old, his father passed away from cancer. His mother remarried… but his new stepfather struggled with addiction.

“The most traumatic experience happened when I was 11 years old,” Steven says. “My stepfather committed suicide… I was the one who found him, and this changed the trajectory of my life.”

Although Steven’s grandparents stepped in to rescue him from this difficult home environment, it wasn’t enough to erase his painful memories. “I began drinking alcohol to cope… and this led to a 10-year journey of drinking every single day.”

After a bad car accident left him critically injured, Steven realized he needed help to truly find freedom from drinking and heal his life.

“I had so many opportunities… but I felt empty.”

Steven came to the Fresno Mission and joined our Academy program for men, where he strengthened his faith and learned the skills he needed to live a stable life. “I’ve learned the importance of serving others and putting God first,” he says.

Not only has Steven’s life been restored through the program, but he’s seen the impact on his family. “They’ve witnessed this change in me, and that’s helped move my family closer to the Lord. The Mission helps heal families.” 

With a degree in business management, Steven hopes to eventually earn his master’s and work full-time at the Mission. “My goal is to work with unhoused people and take what I’ve learned here to minister to others. God has called me to serve.” 

For now, he is working in our auto department, helping to sell used vehicles that provide valuable funding for the Mission’s programs and services.

Steven’s heart is overflowing with gratitude this Thanksgiving for YOUR generosity that helped him rebuild his life. “I am very thankful that the Mission has empowered me to reach beyond my addiction to the possibilities now available to me.”

Steven’s story appeared in the Fall 2023 edition of Lighthouse News.