Last week was one of the most life-changing weeks of my entire life. My life–or what I thought would happen in my life–changed drastically. Twice.
It all started on February 2nd, when I launched a Kickstarter appeal to fund a production I wanted to do on the California Missions. Here’s the video for that appeal:
It was just two weeks after Pope Francis announced that he’d be canonizing Bl. Junipero Serra, and since I was born in San Diego, I’ve always loved the Missions, so the series was a no brainer for me. Our goal was lofty–we had 45 days to raise $50,000 to produce a 10-13 episode series in English and Spanish in time for the canonization in Sept., in addition to everything else I was already doing. But I knew that if God wanted it to happen, it would.
Part of the reason why we decided to launch a Kickstarter appeal was because we wanted to know, once and for all, if people really cared enough about The Faithful Traveler to help us produce it. Funding has always been an issue. We produced the first series on our own, and while our Holy Land series was sponsored by Select International Tours, there are always fees and other things you have to pay for that add up. Eventually, we started getting invitations by other sponsors willing to cover our travel expenses, which was not only amazingly generous, but made us feel so much better about how people felt about our program. Some people got it and saw the value in supporting it financially. And we were so grateful. But, again, there are always more costs involved in producing a travel series than just the travel expenses, and those costs added up. Aside from what we were spending to produce the series, neither David nor I have ever been paid anything for the work we do on the show. It’s always been a labor of love for us.
So we decided to do a Kickstarter project.
At some point in the Kickstarter appeal, I mentioned that I saw the incipient canonization of B. Junipero Serra as a sign that I should do this project that has long been in my heart. I also said that the real sign that would prove to me that God wanted this series to happen would be whether we raised the funds we needed to produce the series.
I got that sign. In one day.
The first day I launched the Kickstarter appeal, I received an email from someone I’d never met or heard from who thought our project was so worthwhile, he wanted to donate all $50,000 of what we needed.
I thought it was a joke. Wouldn’t you?
Clearly, this was the sing I was looking for! God was saying that He liked The Faithful Traveler and he wanted more, right? He had to have motivated this person to make such a generous donation, and while others continued to make their own extremely generous donations on the appeal, I knew already that the series was going to happen.
Then, last Friday, I got another sign. (Don’t ever say God is silent…)
Looking back now, it makes me laugh. Have you ever gotten a gift that you like, but when you see how hard it is for the person who gives it to you to continue doing so, you have to tell them, as gently as possible, that they don’t have to give it to you anymore?
I imagine that’s what God was thinking.
To avoid getting too personal with a story that is not my own, my husband suffered some health setbacks last weekend that put him in the hospital. After a weekend of sleeping alone and thinking about what life would be like without him, I shot this.
I am so blessed, I can’t even count the ways.
I am blessed that I married a guy who wasn’t even Catholic and then went on to not only convert, but to indulge me in this crazy idea of producing a television show about Catholic travel!
I am blessed that God gave me the ability to produce a television series that wasn’t half bad… Wait. Scratch that. It was awesome.
I am blessed to have been able to travel to so many amazing places and to meet so many wonderful people.
I am blessed to have been given the opportunity to tell others about how much I love my faith and I love the Church, and to hope that it made some kind of a difference in their life.
I am blessed to have been invited to write here, and to share with you all my silly stories and to invite you to join me on adventures. Thank you for indulging me.
Now, I am blessed to be able to step back into the shadows with my husband who is still alive and move on to the next adventure, whatever that is.
This will be my last post at Dappled Things, and while my stay here was brief, I’m grateful to you all for hearing what I have to say.
For now, if you would do me one last favor and please pray for me, as I finish up these last two productions of The Faithful Traveler. But most especially, please keep my husband David in your prayers.
Thank you. And so long.
*Oh, and that title is from Douglas Adams’ mind-bliowingly awesome book, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. If you haven’t read it… go read it. It’s one of my favorite books.