I'VE BEEN PUTTING OFF WRITING THIS because, my goodness, what can I possibly say?
I came to this magazine back in 2003--fresh out of J-school and not really even knowing if this journalism gig was for me.
And I'm still unsure.
What I am sure of, however, is that this magazine changed my life. Well, maybe not changed it so much as wrote the last 13 years of it.
I was raised Catholic and knew absolutely zero of the Presbyterian Church. But upon coming to the Record, I promptly got my butt to my local Presbyterian congregation (St. Andrew's, Brampton, Ont., at the time) to figure out what it was all about. Fast forward a year, and I was married in that church. Speed along four years, and my husband and I welcomed our first child--a life change that the Record enabled me to negotiate beautifully by allowing a work-life balance many only dream of. Zip along another almost four years and our second daughter was born, and a year or so after that, we found a new Presbyterian church home in Oakville, where we are now members and where both our girls were baptized.
Working for the Record and having a team of like-minded colleagues has meant that my family never had to come second. (Or not often, anyway!) As long as the magazine went out, I was free to plan my days at will; I was volunteering in the classroom, tagging along on my daughters' field trips, taking time to attend during-the-day school assemblies that my kids were a part of, and dropping them off at school myself and picking them up as well. This has been such a monumental blessing--and one for which I will be forever grateful.
I am now closely involved in my church--something I'm not sure would have happened had I not been so connected to the denomination as a whole. I'm so connected, in fact, that once the Record winds up, my main prospect and hope is focused on a new project in a neighbouring presbytery I'm hoping and praying will get off the ground.
Along the way there have been many exciting travels--when I went to Ethiopia only a few months after joining the Record, it was my first international adventure. The only other time I'd been on a plane was when I headed to Alberta for college, and just about my only other non-Canadian trip was to Disney World when I was nine. But I loved every minute of Ethiopia, and I was hooked--hooked on international travel, sure, but even more so on the idea of mission: on what it means and the ways...