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photo of JoanJoan LaViolette 's Journey Story

God has led me on a journey of prayer since I was a small child. I can remember praying to Baby Jesus to save me from harm and pain every night as I knelt by my bed. I remember walking alone to church until I asked neighbors to take me with them to their church. I had been baptized into five different religious denominations by the time I was a teenager.

I decided this was not working for me. I turned away from my God. I focused my attention on other practices outside of the church. All along this journey I continued to pray to the God of my childhood - Jesus.

I wandered from church based practices. I explored several different and very interesting spiritual practices.  I met many wonderful people and learned that others were seeking the peace I had been searching for and still had not found.

I continued along this journey studying many different religions looking for the answers to my questions about my life and the meaning of life in this universe.

God was patient  with me and let me roam and flounder until I was open to His gentle urging. This urging became a thirst to go back to my childhood experiences with Christ. I began to study the Bible again. I was led to explore prayer practices in the Bible. I soon became very passionate about praying and hungry to learn how I could live a prayer filled life.

The opportunity came to relocate to Santa Rosa area to be closer to our daughter and her family. One of my prayer team members in Concord told me about a place in Santa Rosa called the Journey Center. She said this would be the perfect place for me. She gave me a bookmark with the Journey Center information on it.

So we moved up here and I began another quest to find the Journey Center. I called people and could not find anyone who knew about it. Then my daughter took me to her church and introduced me to an angel by the name of Joanna Quintrell. She was a pastor at this church. When I asked her about it she was very surprised because God had been urging her and others to begin this Center. It was still in the planning phases and here I was asking where it was!!

The last three years have been the most wondrous part of my prayer journey with Christ. I have walked and continue to walk beside these awesome people wanting to do God’s work for everyone not just a chosen few. This has been the perfect place for me to continue my own personal journey with Christ. Through the Journey Center I have been able to explore many aspects of ancient prayer practices and to learn how I can grow in this area of my service to God.

I am so blessed to be able to pray for people wherever they are on their spiritual paths. I love the Wednesday night Prayer booth that we take to downtown Santa Rosa each summer. I am able to put into practice what Christ has been training me to do for him.

I have witnessed the miraculous wonders that prayer can do for all of God’s creation that we pray for.  I continue my path of prayer with God here at the Journey Center and I am in awe of the love God has for us all.

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