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Kimberly Stevens

Nashville, TN

I always was very withdrawn. I was sexually molested at about the age of 3 and I became very withdrawn. I was molested by my uncle and my cousin. I just really grew close to my father and my grandfather. But, as I got older, my mother and father got divorced, my grandfather died, and my life just kind of spiraled. I started going out and I liked boys, but I didn't like boys. I guess the trauma...You know, I always liked being around boys, but I didn't want them to touch me. So I started drinking and then along came the drugs. I'll say I kind of tampered with that for quite a few years. I started in high school with drugs, kind of frequently. Then, after that, it became an every-day thing. I'd say by the age of 28 I was a full-blown addict. I resorted to selling drugs to support my habit. So then I started going to jail, back and forth to jail. So it was a vicious cycle. I went to jail, sold drugs, went to jail, sold drugs. I came to a graduation of Magdalene and then, when I saw the graduation, it was just like "This is the place for me." So, I came to the Magdalene House. But that's not the end of my story because I had to go back out of here a little bit more. I had a problem staying clean. So I had a couple of relapses and it wasn't until my last jail trip that I...I always say that I surrendered, but I really didn't. I had accepted the fact that I was going to go to prison and everything was okay.

So I have tell you this little story about...I wanted to work in the kitchen, waiting on going to prison. So I was like, "Okay God, I'm going to work in the kitchen, but don't put me on breakfast, don't put me on breakfast." So, what did God do? He put me on breakfast. So, here I am working breakfast and then I would come back into my cell like 6:30-7:00 in the morning and it was really quiet, and I had nothing but a Jesus Calling and a Bible. I was still kind of wound up from being up and couldn't go to sleep, so I would read my Jesus Calling and my Bible every morning. It was just like...this peace just started to come over me and God just let me know that everything was okay. As you know, they leave the light burning for you and it really works and I came back home and I'm here. I'm one of the candlemakers. I love making the candles. I love them. It's just like a peace and serenity making the candles. I do other little things, that I really don't want to do because I always want to make candles and they say I just can't be stuck in the candles, but I love making the candles. That's what I do.