Archive for March, 2014

Annual Easter Feast

DSC_3200We will be holding our annual Easter Feast on Thursday, April 17 in our dining hall located at 535 E. Yanonali Street from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m.  Our staff and a team of volunteers will serve meals to men, women and children.  Through charitable donations of food items and gifts from the Santa Barbara community we’re able to serve up to 400 people in need.

The holidays can be a joyful time, but a lonely time for those that are struggling with poverty, homelessness and addiction.  We offer hope and a new beginning, so many of the graduates of our 12-month residential recovery program started here with a simple holiday meal.

Volunteers are still needed to help serve! Please contact Lizzy MacRae at 966-1316 ext. 107 or

“I enjoyed coming here with my dad when I was a kid.”

As a boy, Travis came here to listen to his father’s band play music at the Mission.  But Travis isn’t a kid anymore.  His hunger, his hurt, and his homelessness are an adult nightmare…  For Travis it started early.  When he was just 12, he followed a few friends into drinking and substance abuse, and almost didn’t find his way out again.  “I reached a pretty dark place.”  And for 13 long years, that dark place was all he knew.

Travis says, “I’m a blackout drinker… at any time the consequences could be I would die.  Finally, I knew that if I didn’t do something drastic, I was going to end up just that way.”  That’s when he came back to the Mission for a meal––and stayed to transform his life. Travis says, “It’s overwhelming to go from homeless and detoxing to taking the action needed to pull yourself up by the bootstraps.  That’s why I’m so grateful for being able to fix my life at this place, with the perfect balance between structure and freedom.  There’s so much good Christian teaching to provide a context … and the resources to make the changes I need.  That is huge.”

Travis is reunited with his family and on track to receive full custody of his five-year-old son in just two months.  He is currently employed and clear of all legal charges.

Please listen to Travis’ graduation speech: 

Krista’s Calling


Krista started drinking when she was 12 and was able to keep it “under control” throughout her school years by drinking on the weekends.  At the end of her senior year, Krista was introduced to cocaine and speed, but these did not have the grip on her that alcohol did.  After graduation, she was unable to maintain her college education and went on a seven year drinking binge.

In June of 2005, Krista was hospitalized with pancreatitis and alcoholic hepatitis.  Unfortunately, this did not stop her and she plunged deeper into her addiction by adding meth to her drug use.  She was homeless and made several failed attempts at recovery.  When she came to Bethel House last year, she realized that she didn’t have a solid foundation.  “I didn’t have faith that God had me in His hands.  It wasn’t the first step that I had been struggling with, but it was step three which is making a decision to turn my life over to the care of God,” she said.  “It took some suffering and willingness to get honest with myself, take down my walls, and accept Jesus Christ as my savior.”

Krista is currently attending Santa Barbara City College and pursuing a lifelong dream of a career in wildlife conservation and management.