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A testimony by Judy Abbs

Judy Abbs was aways labeled “Joyful Judy” but internally she did not feel that joy, she hid behind the joyful mask, and she kept the pain inside for no one to see…. hearing the Lord but not able to identify who “she” was.

Judy depicts the significant change in her life came when she discovered a relationship with God. Through this relationship she was able to identify who she was, what her God given gifts were and above all else that she is loved by God.

“I am living in total abandonment! He’s directing my life, and I am in a protected triangle of the trinity.” Understanding her gifts and her relationship with God was the beginning of her healing journey to discover who she was internally.

Before her experiences with Preambula (She’s been through all of them!), she didn’t realize she needed to be healed from the abandonment of her mother due to a lifelong illness. She was also unable to establish relationships throughout her childhood, moving constantly, she had attended five different schools before 8th grade.

She describes her journey in her adult life beginning with RCIA, then a small group at church became her circle of support, next she participated in The Way and her faith began to turn in a new direction.

The Way helped her focus on God’s call to “accept our past, forgive – not really forget, but know that we’ve learned from it and move on,” she said. She came away from the program understanding “that I can live in the moment, not fear the future and I can come up with new dreams and hopes. That will only make me be a better disciple.” Her On Fire retreat was the experience that led to the path of healing, and her faith community began to grow exponentially. “People were praying and loving me through this community.”

Judy became an avid volunteer “caterer” at Preambula functions and other cohort gatherings throughout Pittsburgh creating menus and community. She continues to participate in prayer groups through campfires and huddles, stemming from her Preambula experiences. She is also heavily involved in other ministries in her local church community including retreats, youth ministry involvement, and more.

Judy will tell you, she IS joyful Judy. It is who she is today thanks to the intimate relationship she has embraced with Jesus Christ.