I was reared in a typical godly home complete with church attendance whenever the doors were open, family meals around the table every night and only the best Christian education. Papa always worked two or more jobs, and Mamma taught to keep us in private schools. I got into trouble a lot, but it was just normal "boy" trouble (setting fire to the school, etc.), until I turned fourteen.
I wish I recalled sweet aromas during holidays or laughter at family functions during my childhood. Instead I recall crying until I couldn't see while my uncle molested me. For years I kept this secret until I confronted him. We talked for an hour. He had also been molested. The molestation traveled from generation to generation, like a big snake that grows bigger).
I was born in New Orleans, Louisiana on October 16,1985. My mother Hattie Renfroe and father, David Labeaud were not married. I have six siblings. For the most part of my childhood I lived in two worlds. I was raised by my paternal grandparents Gilbert and Iris Labeaud and my maternal grandmother Missie Lee Renfroe. They raised me to the best of their abilities. My paternal grandparents raised me as a Catholic and we attended St David's church
How well do I remember the blood on the walls from the constant fighting that went on at home. It was usually Dad’s blood. Mom had thrown an object and cut him with it. As children, we would scream and cry in terror. My parents drank almost every weekend and the latter parts of the day!
Why I Tell My Testimony...Joseph was a man with a past. He had all his years in Egypt to forget what was done to him by his brothers. He had a new life, a family, and an important political position to keep him busy. He could not escape or ignore his past forever, and as soon as he was face to face with his siblings he had a really tough, emotional reaction. It took him awhile, but he had to allow God to deal with his heart before his past could be turned for God's glory.
My name is Mercedes Ramirez Johnson. It was my 21st birthday and my parents and I were so excited to be embarking on our trip from Kansas City, Missouri to Cali, Colombia. It would be the first time in over 30 years that my parents would be spending the Christmas holiday with their family in Colombia since coming to the US in the 1960's. My parents, Benjamin and Mercedes Ramirez, were both hardworking parents that came to this country for us to have a better shot at life.