I could have never asked for such a great gift, going to Trinity was the chance of a lifetime. At 17 years old, I was on the brink of destruction. Anything you could think of, I was most likely doing it. Girls come from all over the U.S. to have a fresh start at life, and I was just one of the lucky ones. I consider myself, my own worst enemy; I put myself in situations that most girls my age are in right now. While it was a long journey I learned a lot and gained more insights than I thought possible.
I was one of the popular girls, I had all of the right clothes, friends, boys, I had the newest car and all the money. Everyone wanted something to do with me at one point or another. I thought I had everything too, friends, love and money. I didn’t need anything else, I was equipped with everything I needed. My life fell apart piece by piece, but luckily, I was plucked out of the hands of sin and wrong and placed gently into the hands of Christ. While I was submerged in deep waters, I slowly began to resurface and make a new me. My life was a mess and I admit it took me a while to trust anyone, but with the help of a wicked awesome staff I learned the good things about life.
I was given the chance to start fresh, forgive myself and others, and live a healthy life. I have gained more insights and learned a lot of things I didn’t know along the way, both about me and the world. While I might not always enjoyed it, I know that it is what was best for me and I know that through a hard journey comes healing and growth. I can honestly say that I am thankful for Trinity Teen Solutions.
-A.E. Sorrento, FL
Trinity is a teen solution unlike any I have heard or experienced. The main goal of trinity is to change our mind, body and soul. Trinity emphasizes how important it is to give in everything in order for our lives to change completely.
Days here are planned for us. We don’t have to plan for ourselves but staff, whom know best, do that job. Every person here is unique and different. Staff, by knowing our weak spots and the areas we need to work in, give us different challenges for us to grow and become better in areas that have affected us in our past and made us go through the wrong path.
Trinity also emphasizes the importance to have Christ in our lives. It is impossible to change our thinking and beliefs without relying on Christ.
Since trinity is on a ranch we learn how to work with animal and they help us to grow and learn how to practice to care for others and be loving. It requires a lot of patience and consideration to complete this work. We experience a great feeling of accomplishment after our tasks are completed. Trinity shows us better ways to live life and that there are better things in life for us. This program shows us that we all have a purpose in life and that is not wasting it with wrong doings. All staff here loves each girl unconditionally and helps us to change our lives.
-C.N. San Juan, Puerto Rico
Before I came to Trinity, my life was going down hill. My life depended on drugs, sex and rock & roll. For three years, I was a sex addict. I was always looking for a guy to have sex with and most of the time it was a guy I barely knew. Besides this, alcohol and pot were involved. Because of how miserable I was feeling I thought drugs could make me forget but each time it got worst.
I was raised in a very wealthy catholic family were people loved me unconditionally. I had everything I needed in order to become a nice and healthy girl with a great education. I was considered one of the best athletes from my region. From a young age I played basketball, volleyball and soccer. I did not have an excuse not to be successful in life. Even though I had all these gifts and talents, I was very hurt from my childhood. I lived with an abusive older brother who was constantly tearing me down. Because of this, I started to seek love from the outside because of how unworthy I felt.
Toward my last days before arriving at trinity was when I was loosing control of my life. I was on the line of being expelled from high school because of drugs, I was having sex with numerous guys I did not know and had no relationship with my parents.
Trinity has changed my life. I finally looked deep into my life on why I did such things. Trinity has taught me the true meaning of life, one I did not know. Trinity has also helped me to find Christ and build my relationship with him.
Every day staff gave us different challenges to grow and succeed in areas we never thought possible. Life has a beautiful meaning and is great to be finally experiencing it. There is more to life than drugs and sex.
-C.N. San Juan, Puerto Rico
By anyone’s standards, sixteen year-old Dennett’s life was out of control. She was locked in the mental ward of a Maryland hospital, where the emergency room crisis counselor sent her after she threatened to kill her parents. It was either that or jail, so an unrepentant Dennett allowed herself to be committed, hoping to score enough prescription medicine to continue her addicted lifestyle.
Things had been spiraling downward for a year, ever since Dennett made what she now calls “the worst decision of my life.” In one night, the adopted daughter of Baptist ministers got drunk and tried drugs for the first time. And in those lowest, most self-destructive of acts, Dennett thought she found a few hours of escape from the emotional issues that plagued her.
Dennett never felt like she fit in. Making friends seemed harder for her than for other children. Her emotions controlled her; she was hyper one minute and viciously angry the next. Rejection crushed her, whether it came from an elementary school playmate or from a God she thought didn’t make her good enough to live up to her own expectations. She was a mistake, she thought, and after a distant cousin committed suicide she became obsessed with thoughts of death and dying, believing that she wasn’t worthy to live.
In eighth grade, Dennett met a group of kids who welcomed her and made her feel like part of a clique. She didn’t care that they used drugs and even sold them. When they invited her to a party, she willingly went along, ready to try whatever they gave her in order to be accepted.
Three months after her first experience with marijuana, Dennett was a mess. She did some kind of drug every day, from pot to pills to whatever she could find in the medicine cabinet. Getting high took over her life; she craved the next experience even when she had just taken something. She sold drugs and her own body to pay for her habit. “I couldn’t go to sleep at night without drugs. I couldn’t stay awake without drugs. I couldn’t do anything without drugs. I was trying to hide so much and mask so much pain through partying. It was all so tiring,” she remembers now.
Thoughts of death continued to plague her, and Dennett choices often put her own life at risk. One day, Dennett and her friends skipped school, got high, and went for a drive. The guy who was driving her car swerved into oncoming traffic and hit another vehicle head on. Dennett was so badly injured in the crash that she had to be taken to the hospital in a helicopter. After a long and painful stay in the hospital, Dennett came home even more addicted to narcotics. She went right back to skipping school and driving under the influence.
After the accident, Dennett’s behavior rapidly outpaced even her drug-dealing friends. When she was drunk or high, her anger poured out and she would cry for hours, threatening to kill herself and anyone around her. She started to fantasize about killing other people as well as herself, and found escape in the horrible images that filled her mind.
Finally, Dennett’s parents took action. They overheard her talking on the phone about her death wishes, and how she wanted to “slaughter” them. Frightened and overwhelmed, they confronted her, but she pushed them away in a rage. She dared them to send her away, to call the police to report what they’d heard. Instead, Dennett’s parents took her to the emergency room and then to a mental ward. She fought back the entire time and counted down the days and hours until she could go back to her drug-fueled life.
But Dennett’s parents wouldn’t let her continue her self-destruction. When they picked her up from the hospital, they told her that she wouldn’t be coming home. Instead, she would travel halfway across the country to a residential program in Wyoming for girls, called Trinity Teen Solution. It was a last-ditch effort to help Dennett get her life together.
Trinity brings troubled girls together from across the country, and through intense counseling and outdoor activity, guides them toward spiritual and physical healing. The days are long, full of group activities, ranch chores, school, and personal therapy. It was a dramatic difference from Dennett’s self-destructive suburban lifestyle. And though she didn’t know it right away, it was exactly what she needed.
For the first five months, Dennett refused to let the concern of the center’s staff touch her damaged soul. She dreamt about her old life and lashed out at anyone who tried to reach her. Physical withdrawal from drugs was nothing compared to her deep sense of self-hatred that manifested in homicidal rage.
But God removed Dennett from all of her old vices and escapes for a reason. The structure of the program and the constant examples of God’s love carved new channels into her soul. And one night, after a long day of physical work and an unwelcome run up the hill from the barns to her cabin, Dennett collapsed physically and emotionally. She remembers what happened next this way:
“I was furious [about having to run], and I was thinking how dumb I was for getting so furious over running… and I hated myself for it. So I was running and crying and thinking about so much stuff… and when I got to the top [of the hill] I just couldn’t do it anymore. I couldn’t keep up with so much hate, and I broke down. I decided that maybe everyone there was right, and God was the only way. Maybe I should stop shunning him and give him a chance.”
Dennett lay on the ground outside her cabin, and for the first time since her life started to spiral out of control, she prayed. Over and over she cried out “I’m sorry” as she laid her past behavior and mistakes at Jesus’ feet. As burdens were lifted, Dennett’s head came up off the ground, and she decided to take a step toward healing. After fighting her counselors for months and her parents for years, Dennett decided to try things their way.
For the next thirteen months of the Trinity Teen program, Dennett committed to tell the truth more, and to listen more. She opened up to her therapist and took her assignments for spiritual growth and healing more seriously. It wasn’t an overnight change – she still struggled with anger and could lash out without warning. But over time, God worked on her soul. Her hate was replaced by His love, and by the time she graduated from Trinity, she could hold her head up and announce that she was loved.
“God has completely forgiven me,” she enthusiastically reports with a smile. “I never thought it was possible. But I learned about who God truly is, and I learned how to repent. The first time I ever felt God’s forgiveness I could have been the happiest person in the world. I felt so much joy and peace I could barely contain myself. It felt like heaven on earth.”
A year later, Dennett is living with her parents in Maryland, working at a veterinary hospital and volunteering for her church. Her life is completely changed, a testimony to what God can do even when things seem out of control.
-D.L. Abingdon, MD
Just to let you know how things are going with Jacquie. You did a fantastic job teaching her those lessons she refused to learn from me. Transitioning back into family life was not without setbacks, frustrations and angst but through it all, I did find that Jacquie was now able to listen to my view point, consider it, and then modify her thoughts and actions according to this new information. This past summer, she spent with my younger sister and their four children as a nanny. She returned to begin her last year of high school a truly beautiful, gracious, humble and capable young woman. I trust you would be as proud of her as I and her brothers are.
Increasingly, she runs into conflict with her father. This is not of her making, but rather his chosing not to know her, as well as his embracing moral errors. In this extreme trial of matters of heart and family, our Jacquie, yours and mine, is completely loving as defined by 1st Corinthians. Her brothers and I find her totally awesome in her patience and kindness towards a man that refuses to speak to her and looks at her with utter contempt and disgust. By her example, we are all more loving and patient with each other. She is in the process of applying for a grant which would award her cost free housing in the city we live in so that she needn’t live under the same roof as the man who has chosen to be alienated from her because he disagrees with her generous, loving and Catholic view points and actions.
I keep you and your girls in my prayers. Thank you again for being so available and supportive at a moment’s notice for us.
God bless you all,
Trinity Teen Solutions is a place unlike any other place. At Trinity there are many growing experiences that can teach you so much about others and about yourself. Almost everything you do at Trinity can help you to become a better person.
At Trinity you can learn to better yourself mentally, physically and, spiritually. A lot of work there helps you to become strong. Having daily responsibilities such as caring for animals, cooking, laundry, or any other daily chore can teach you responsibility and how to care for yourself in life and ways to deal with situations that may come up unexpected in life. At Trinity you have so much time to really look at yourself and the world around you. You can enjoy the beautiful scenery that God has placed here before your eyes. Trinity is not always an easy walk in the park and there can be some difficult times with struggles, but you are never alone in them and there is always people surrounding you here that love you and want nothing but to help you through those hard times. It is through those times and struggles that you really grow from them.
Before Trinity a lot of things from the past had hurt me in my life and weighed me down. They caused a lot of pain and destruction in my life. For so long I had kept these things to myself and ran from them and refused to look at them for what they really were. By doing this I pushed my family away and everyone around me that cared and wanted to be there for me. All the world around me seemed like nothing more than a dark cold place with no hope.
When arriving at Trinity things seemed to not get better but to only get worse in my mind. But after being there for awhile and experiencing healing in areas of my life I was able to see the change and realize the growth that was taking place in my life and see the brighter side of things and have more hope. For the first time in my life even though all the struggles there seemed to be some relief and some safety. At Trinity there is the opportunity to be lifted from all your burdens that you may not even realize you are carrying, from all the pain that you have been dragging around with you. So many years of hurt and many other emotions that can build up within you can be lifted from you at Trinity. At Trinity you are surrounded by people who love you, and care about you and want only to help you through whatever it is that you have to deal with. It is an amazing blessing and truly a wonderful opportunity to change around things in your life. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to get that second chance at life that you may feel like you have lost or maybe even don’t deserve, but you do and Trinity is here to offer that to you.
-K.F. Alliance, NE
Before I came to Trinity, my life was a complete disaster! I never obeyed my parents, never told the truth, was very irresponsible, really mean and hateful to people I did not like and my mom, and was doing things no fifteen year old should ever be doing. I was out of control!
Being at Trinity is really helping me to change my life. I have learned obedience and honesty very much in depth here. They stress these two virtues very much here. I have also learned a lot more responsibility with daily chores, and school and assignments to keep up with.
I have also been working on many internal things. I know that I am getting further because I can just feel it inside. I have learned a lot about myself here, but I know there is more to learn. I found out what it feels like to have real joy and happiness, and feeling peace in my heart for the first time in a very long time.
I have also strengthened my relationship with my parents. When on a family visit with them, they told me they noticed how much I have changed, and they were very proud to hear and see my progress made so far in this program.
Being here at Trinity is truly a blessing, and is helping me to change my life. I do not know of a safer or better place anywhere in the world where they help you change your mind, body, and soul completely. Trinity really is the only place to go.
-K.J.L. Boonville, MO
Before I got to trinity my life was a wreck, it was actually more that that, I was heading towards hell. Some people even told me, as a joke that the devil already has a condo set up for me. I was known in my school for the druggy, everyone turned to me when they wanted drugs or something else. Everyday for me was the same, drink, smoke, and party! I thought I would have learned that I was not living a good life after I had an abortion, but it actually made everything worse. My boyfriend was abusive and I turned to drugs for everything. I learned to shut my emotions down. I built very thick cement walls up around my heart.
Then one day my parents decided to ask God for help. Then they brought me to trinity, where im learning to heel. Everyone here is helping me to believe that I do have a purpose to live. They are teaching me to love myself and to build healthy relationships with my family. They are also teaching me how to turn to God for help instead of drugs and other things. Trinity has helped me with my spiritual life, and well it saved my life.
-K.R. Rapid City, SD
“The cowgirl life” every day here is never the same. It is also not the normal life either. At trinity, you do things here that help you to be yourself. They also help me and other girls to learn how to respect other people as well, as yourself. The things you would never think of, actually help you. We ride horses, and we birth pigs even.
Here at trinity we have fun, we learn how to be the real us. We are also neighbors with the monk’s. We help them out almost every Saturday it is a lot of fun also. We live the real cowgirl life. we cook for ourselves and clean up after ourselves. It teaches us a lot more that I can even think of. That is the way I would want my life to be. “the cowgirl way”.
And the advisors are awesome!
-K.R. Rapid City, SD
I’m a dad, just like all fathers, and not too long ago just like you are now – I was worried to the point of despair concerning one of my children – a daughter. This precious child of mine was going to die if her father (and her mother) did not help her. She could not and would not help herself. Her parents were fools and idiots and only her “friends” and the culture of death held the “truth” and were worthy of her time and of her “efforts”. School, family, the future, and especially her Faith were without meaning to her – forgotten and disdained. Does this sound familiar to you?
If it does, then let me tell you a little secret. At this point in time my friend, you don’t even know a third of the crap and the horror that she is involved in. We (parents) think that we have a handle on the lives and involvements of our children, but when they make the choice to run with the culture of death, they hide it very, very well. Don’t kid yourself, accept it – you’re a wooden-head dummy about her real status now. Ya, I know, because it takes one to know one – and I’m still getting the sawdust out of my noggin.
I don’t offer my help with words only. I offer it with my heart because I KNOW where you are at and what you feel. Also, since I know what you are feeling – I know that you might feel somewhat embarrassed about this. How could this be happening in YOUR family?
One last point that I will share with you from my perspective is that the people and the program at Trinity Teen Solutions are exactly what they seem to be… Real, Faith-filled, therapeutic, life-changing, and life-saving. They will always hold a special place in the life of this Father – who now has a daughter who is an incredible young lady, filled with life, hope and faith.
Sincerely In Christ,
-L.M. Munster, IN
Michael and I have both completed our face to face sessions with Justin (we are continuing to work with him by phone, too), and we wanted to share with you our impressions of these experiences thus far.
First of all, it’s almost impossible to find words to describe Justin and his approach with both of us since Megan began her stay at Trinity. From early on, he worked gently, lovingly, and diligently to earn our trust (which seemingly took the sting out of the painful decision to remove Megan from our home); and in a very short time, between phone calls and assignments, that mile mark was met and we felt peace for the first time in a long while. Justin has been eager and supportive of our efforts from the outset, and his sincere commitment to the healing of our family has comforted and encouraged us on in this good fight. To both Michael and me, Justin has been a friend, a confidant, a mediator, a spiritual advisor, teacher, and on some occasions, even a sounding board! He has amazing talent with his EMDR approach & spiritually-based counseling techniques (essential ingredients, we’re convinced, to curing the spiritual sickness of this world!), and his gentleness, compassion, warmth, understanding, and humor certainly compliment these gifts profoundly. Our individual sessions with him were sometimes difficult to move through, yet his gentle approach completely relaxed us and helped us to feel at ease and safe through the painful process of penetrating deep wounds. It seemed a “divine doctor” was at work with and through him. The interior benefits were, and are still, palpable. In fact, both Michael & I returned home feeling 100 lbs lighter 😉 …….and surely Fr. Daniel Mary’s work contributed powerfully as well! He was the “cherry on top” of our blessed “sundae”!!!
Angie, as we reflect on all that has transpired over the past few months, and days, since our individual work with Justin, we can both say with absolute confidence and sincerity that the “parenting” work accomplished through these sessions was of vital importance in our achieving peace within our own souls and within our family system. In fact, neither Michael nor I could imagine a complete transformation in our home without having had this one-on-one time with Justin, where we are realizing the inner obstacles to our growth in virtue and learned secrets to communicating and understanding one another even better. Some very subtle changes are already reaping enormous benefits in our marriage and family relationships. Nothing in our lives has impacted us as overwhelmingly as this TTS experience, and for this, we are eternally grateful.
TTS has really been a life raft in this wild storm, and we are appreciative and grateful beyond words for the opportunity you and Justin have afforded us with this “extension” of the program. We’re praying, too, that one day we’ll even be able to show our gratitude by witnessing to the benefits of the TTS philosophy. This program is no doubt a tremendous and much needed gift from above that will hopefully trigger positive, eternal ripple effects!
We hope, too, that you might even consider a yearly “tune up” for us, your needy “parents on the front lines!” We envision a “TTS Parenting Center” one day, whereby “soldiers” (parents) come in for an interior cleansing in order to return to the battlefield fully renewed and strengthened for combat. In the meantime, we already feel a great sense of relief just knowing that all of you are only a phone call away!
You, all of the staff, and girls, remain in our daily prayers! With deepest gratitude and appreciation,
-M.S. Scituate, MA
Dear Friends we have a common bond of friendship in our common experience with our dearest daughters. Feeling the strain of your decision to send your daughter to TTS, let me tell you about some of the ways that my wife and I handled this. (But first I must tell you a brief snippet about my first meeting with the Trinity staff. This occurred after our daughter was at Trinity for six months. We were invited to come for a visit (and more!) to Trinity. After reviewing some of our “Family Profile” data that was used to help our daughter, The Therapy staff had me pegged as a weeper! And although they will deny this – I’m sure that there was a Therapy staff “pool” as to the timing of my first ocular flood!! They were right, of course, and they didn’t have long to wait either !! Tears – YES – but none of them sad. Just Thankful Tears and Grateful Tears and Tears of Joy.)
Now to your issue of strain and anxiety and upset – Yep, all normal and all to be very much expected. My wife and I handled this, at least partially, by remembering some prophetic words which were said when we both attended a talk given by Father John Corapi who is a traveling evangelist and a most remarkable speaker. My wife and I were next to each other in the fifth row in an auditorium filled with over 2000 people listening to father Corapi speak about Our Children and Our Culture of Death. I’ll never forget his words and it seemed as if his eyes were vividly directed specifically at us when he said, “The Devil and his ilk want your child to be dead. Yes, The devil and this culture so influenced by his evil want you to wake up one day and find your child dead – in some dumpster. A victim of this self indulgent society that seeks not LIFE for it’s children – but urges them on to a victimized goal of Death.” My wife and I looked at each other and we knew that those words were in a special way meant for us. And through the help, the power and the Grace of God we helped our daughter to once again embrace LIFE. And when you hug your daughter – and then leave her at Trinity…. that hug will be the embrace of LIFE for her… and for you as well.
I should stop at this point and wait to speak to you by phone, but as my wife will attest, stopping has never been a strong point with me. However, I feel an obligation to you both – knowing from experience how I felt and realizing that you now feel that way. And that feeling is a roller coaster of emotions, doubts, and uncertainties. A last element of advise is to look to your Faith and to Scripture for the very best assistance in your time of need. Did you see, “The Passion of The Christ” ? Think back to the scene where Mary His Mother met Him and embraced Him as He carried the cross on His way to Calvary. Now reread your last email to me. And now consider how His mother may have written those same words to me in Her “email:” “I am so worried about His walk to Calvary and this separation … because He will suffer so horribly as He carries on … and I am a weeper, so it will be so difficult for me as well … even though I know that this is the best thing for Jane Doe … it’s still so very hard and difficult.”
In many ways, at least for my wife and I, Christ’s Mother was the model and the best example of Grace for all parents, and especially for parents who must help their child by the cross of separation. And yes I will stop here. We look forward to speaking to you soon.
Sincerely yours in Christ,
-L.M. Munster, IN
Eighteen months ago, I would never have imagined myself to be the girl I am today. To think that my life could change as much as it has astounds me. Throughout all that I have been through, there was one thing that Trinity continually showed me that was extremely fundamental to the change that has taken place in my life; and that was love.
My life before Trinity consisted solely of pain, hurt, secrecy, alcohol, drugs, sex, unhealthy, broken relationships, materialism, and every other sin that the majority of girls are facing living in the world today. All that mattered to me was what I looked like, what boy I was dating, and how I could cover up the continual lies and deceits that consumed my life. I thought that the life I lived was as good as it could ever get. I had such a twisted view of love and life that to me anything that “felt good”, was good. I was spinning downward fast, and by the grace of God and the intervention of my parents, I was given a second chance. By the time I arrived at Trinity, my relationship with my parents was non-existent, and my entire life was a lie. I had absolutely no idea who I was, because for so long I had been spending my time trying to be someone I was not. I was removed from all earthly distractions and for the first time in my life, I had to take a good look at myself.
The healing road is long and hard, but there is one thing I experienced at Trinity that I had not experienced before: love, real love. The love that is not superficial, or fleeting, or based entirely on feelings. It is a deep love, one that knows no ends. This love showed me that I am worth it. That I am so valuable and precious that I am better then the type of life I was living. That I am worth fighting for and that nothing I have ever done in my life can change that. This type of love was so foreign to me, that as it was revealed to me by the people and the experiences at Trinity, my life was transformed. All it took was the decision to change and a consistent fight for my life. I began to see the love my parents had for me by bringing me to Trinity, and with the help of the people there I was able to rebuild the relationships I had with my family members that were destroyed. I came to see that I have a life ahead of me that is worth living.
I can honestly say that I would not be alive today if it was not for Trinity. It would not have been long before the death I had been cheating caught up with me. Prior to Trinity, I was in the lowest of lows. I had committed sins so awful that I never imagined it possible for me to be “good” again. I considered myself bad, worthless, and undeserving of any good for my life. However, that was where I was wrong. During my time at Trinity, I was shown countless times that there is nothing I can do that would make me bad, worthless, or unforgivable. There is no sin too great to be forgiven and healed. There is always hope. There was so much hope for me, even during the times where it seemed so far away. There is hope for anyone in the same situation. My experiences at Trinity and the life lessons that I have learned have proven this to me. As bad as it ever looks, change is possible, healing is possible, and hope is possible. There is so much real joy and happiness awaiting me in my life it is unbelievable. It is awaiting everyone who is willing to let go of the pain and misery infesting their lives, and change. The superficial happiness I had in my past could not even compare to the amount of true happiness I have in my life now. Throughout it all, I would never change a minute of the journey Trinity has taken me on. I will not ever be able to pay back the amount of mercy, hope, love, and forgiveness I have been given. I was literally saved, and my life has completely changed because of Trinity. I thank God for this everyday.
-M.S. Scituate, MA