Women’s Legacy Program leads along the path to healing and helping others

Recently, we’ve been sharing stories of graduates, leaders, and staff of Mighty Oaks Warrior Programs with a focus on the Men’s Legacy Program. This month, we aim the spotlight on programming for women as we take time to visit with Women’s Programs Director Susanne Stalnecker.

The Legacy Program for Women, according to the MOWP website, is a three-day retreat that leads spouses and military women through a time of learning, exploration, and growth with an aim to cultivate virtuous characteristics in a safe, open, nurturing environment.

The goal is to give women a biblical blueprint of womanhood – a Proverbs 31 woman, and target the key areas of their life – faith, marriage, mothering, health, service, and finances – in order to challenge and grow them into who they were designed to be.

Women's Legacy Program participants bond while riding quads at SkyRose Ranch-min

Women’s Legacy Program participants bond while riding quads at SkyRose Ranch.

“This program is about more than just the classes taught or finding healing for yourself,” said Stalnecker. “It’s about getting yourself to a place where you can help the person next to you. It’s about learning who it is that you were created to be, learning how to live like that, and passing that along to the next person.”

The first women’s program was held at Skyrose Ranch in San Miguel in August of 2014, with two military spouses and four active duty female service members in attendance. Since then, five additional Women’s Legacy Programs have taken place, with a total of approximately 95 graduates.

“Each session of our program is different,” said Stalnecker, “as far as the ratio of veterans/active duty service members to spouses, but there usually seems to be a pretty good mix of both.”

Finding hope, serving others

When asked about some of the most memorable changes taking place among program attendees, Stalnecker said two women immediately come to mind. In fact, both of these ladies are currently serving as leaders in the women’s program where they share their experiences and help others facing challenges.

“One of the ladies had just recently accepted Christ before our very first session,” said Stalnecker, “and the other was separated from her husband at the time she attended. They have both grown tremendously and are now able to share the hope they found in Christ.”

Many times, women fail to reach out and find help for challenges they’re enduring either from serving in the military or being married to a military member or veteran. Stalnecker has a special message for anyone feeling the slightest bit of hesitation when it comes to attending a MOWP Women’s Legacy Program.

MOWP Women's Legacy Program graduates at SkyRose Ranch-min

MOWP Women’s Legacy Program graduates at SkyRose Ranch.

“I’d like to tell them, ‘don’t be afraid.’ There are more women than you know struggling with the same things you are,” said Stalnecker. “We, as women, need other women in our lives to walk alongside us in our struggles AND victories. We have seen, time and time again, women who come very fearful of being accepted or received well by the other ladies in attendance. By the end of the three days, they are best friends and ‘sisters’ in the journey of life… past, present, and future!”

The next Women’s Legacy Program session will take place Sept. 14-17 at SkyRose Ranch in San Miguel. If you or someone you love would like to sign up, visit www.mightyoaksprograms.org and click on the programs link. There, find an application as well as information on all MOWP programs; once an application is filled out and submitted, you will be contacted by a team member.