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About us

Story Ministry

Our Stories

 

At Story Ministry, we're not just an organization, we're a tapestry woven from the threads of lived experience and unyielding hope. Each member brings a unique story, a piece of the puzzle that forms our unwavering commitment to supporting families navigating the complexities of mental health.

 

From loss to legacy: One thread runs through the memory of a son lost to addiction, sparking a father's calling to build a church - a beacon of solace for families facing similar battles. This faith-fueled commitment is the bedrock of our mission, reminding us that even in darkness, hope can bloom.

 

 

A father's fight: Another thread carries the weight of a father's anguish for his son in a mental health hospital. His relentless desire to ease the burden for other families fuels our advocacy efforts, ensuring no one navigates this journey alone. We empower families to be heard, understood, and equipped to handle the challenges that come their way.

 

Love's unwavering embrace: A husband and wife, bound by love and purpose, weave a thread of unwavering dedication. Their commitment to families struggling with mental health is a testament to the healing power of connection. Through support groups and resource creation, they bridge the gap between isolation and understanding, fostering a community where shared experiences become stepping stones to resilience.

A sister's strength: Witnessing the firsthand struggle of her brother and nephew, a sister's love takes the form of unwavering support. Her story reminds us that family is the foundation of strength, and her dedication fuels our outreach efforts, ensuring no family feels invisible in their fight.

From battlefield to brotherhood: A military veteran's thread carries the scars of combat and the deep understanding of mental health struggles within the military community. His story is a testament to the power of shared experience, and his contributions pave the way for targeted support and resources tailored to the unique needs of veterans and their families.

 

Redemption's rhythm: A young man who once walked the dark path of drug addiction now weaves a thread of redemption through Christian rap. His music resonates with youth at risk, offering a beacon of hope and a path towards healing. His story embodies the transformative power of community and second chances, reminding us that even the deepest wounds can become instruments of change.

These are just a few of the threads that make up the Story Ministry tapestry. Each individual story becomes a brushstroke on the canvas of our mission, a testament to the unwavering human spirit and the power of connection in the face of adversity. Here, families find not just resources and support, but a chorus of voices singing the same song of hope, resilience, and love.

Join us in this symphony of support. Share your story, lend your voice, and together, let's weave a brighter future for families on the journey of mental health.

Statement of Faith for Story Ministry

We believe:

  • In the one God, eternally existing in three persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. We find this truth woven throughout the tapestry of Scripture, from the opening words of Genesis to the final verses of Revelation.

  • In the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior. His sacrifice on the cross paid the ultimate price for our sins, offering forgiveness and reconciliation with God. His resurrection shattered the chains of death and promises eternal life to those who believe.

  • In the Bible as the inspired Word of God, a living and active document that guides our faith and practice. Its timeless truths offer wisdom for every season of life, direction for our steps, and hope for the future.

  • In the reality of God, our creator and redeemer. He is not a distant deity but a loving Father who walks with us through every joy and sorrow, every triumph and struggle.

  • In the sanctity of marriage, a covenant established by God between one man and one woman. This union reflects the love and unity within the Trinity and provides a foundation for building strong families, communities, and churches.

  • In the call to serve and love our neighbors, especially those who are hurting, sick, and lost. We believe in extending compassion and sharing the hope of Christ with all, regardless of their circumstances.

  • In leading with love and empathy, following the example of Jesus who came to serve, not to be served. We strive to build relationships based on mutual respect, understanding, and a genuine desire to help one another grow closer to God and each other.

Story Ministry is a community of believers committed to living out these core values. We believe that stories have the power to connect us, inspire us, and transform us. We gather to share our stories, listen to the stories of others, and discover the stories God is writing in our lives. We invite you to join us in this journey of faith, love, and service.

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our Team:
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Pastors Will and Julie Ramsey

Will and Julie joined a team to plant Engage City Church in Huber Heights, Ohio.  It was during this time Will received his Associates Degree in Biblical Studies and became an ordained Pastor.  After the death of their son in 2020, God showed them this was the time to plant Hope City Church. After completing their assessment and training with The Send Network in 2022, they set out to South Central Texas to plant Hope City Church.  Through all their experiences they are excited to share the Hope of Jesus Christ.  Together they have raised 3 grown children:  Brock (forever 29, residing in Heaven),  Myahrissa (28, residing in Ohio), Madison (24, residing in Virginia).  Will is also a published author and motivational speaker and is passionate about helping others Focus Forward on what God has for them.  Currently you can find his weekly devotional "Word of Hope with Will" every Monday and Friday on the HCC Facebook page.

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Cedric R. Dunmore, MA, LCDC

A retired veteran of the United States Air Force with 20 years of service. While in the air force I was trained in mental health, substance use, and social work. I also have experience working with military personnel and their families on developing healthy life skills and supportive counseling during war time and peace time campaigns. Shortly before retiring, I received my bachelor degree from Park University in Social Psychology and received my Master of Arts (MA) in Counseling from St. Edwards University.

Post military career, I worked with substance use offenders at the Joe Ney Unit Substance Abuse Felony Punishment Program (SAF-P) in Hondo, Texas assisting pre-released offenders and their families with skills for reunification with family and tools for a successful recovery. Most recently my passion afforded me the opportunity to perform duties as: case manager, lead substance use counselor, continuing care coordinator, and marketing & business development representative for a local treatment center where I worked for 10 years.

In 1989, I began working in the counseling field with the specialty of working with addicts and their families. I am also an Intervention Professional. I have empathy for both addicts and family members which fuels my passion to help improve their total quality of life as a unit. My beliefs are anchored in the spiritual realm of, with hope all things are possible. My goal is to offer options for strengthening the clients will to maximize their potential for success.

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Debbie Dunmore, MEd, LPC

I am a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC). I received my Master of Education (MEd) in 2006 at Texas Tech University. Since 2004, I have worked directly with children and adolescents in many diverse areas to include: substance use inpatient/outpatient programs, foster care homes and the Lubbock Juvenile Detention Center. The experience has allowed me to broaden my mind and humanitarian skills. In addition, I worked with the parents of children who were in the foster care system and worked on how to reunite the parent-child relationship. I’m very passionate about working with at-risk adolescents and bringing hope back into their lives. In order to accomplish this goal the family dynamics must be incorporated. It will take all parties involved to engage and work together in order to see growth.

I continue to work with adolescents and currently working with adults suffering from substance use with co-occurring mental health disorders along with their families. I also help couples and families, to include blended families, deal with communication issues, trust, and conflict resolution related to challenges within the family system. My therapeutic style is geared more toward Reality Therapy and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy.

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Jacob Bowker
Kira Martin

Ministry Development 

Jacob Bowker is a member of the board and in charge of our ministry programs and development. Jacob has 20+ years of experience in media, marketing, business development, and launching start-ups.

 

He has a son who is in a mental health hospital, and through his journey with his son, he grew a heart for individuals dealing with drug addiction  and mental health. 

 

Jacob's Favorite Bible Verse:

Romans 12:2 - 

Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.

Director of Women's Ministry

Kira Martin brings nearly 25 years of sales and planning experience, but the work she’s most proud of is her “joy” work. She’s been involved in various volunteering, donation and fundraising programs. Kira serves as our Treasurer, President of the Board, and Director of the Women's Ministry. 

Kira has loved ones with mental health issues and has survived personal and life-threatening health issues. These trials have turned into some of Kira’s biggest blessings, equipping her with great compassion and a heart to serve. Kira attributes her restored health to the mercy and glory of the Lord. 

 

Kira’s Favorite Bible Verse:

Jeremiah 29:11 -

For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.

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Dee Kohlhoff COO

A Life Bridging Worlds, Healing Hearts

Dee Kohlhoff, Story Ministry's Chief Operating Officer, isn't your average executive. A natural connector, she spent years bridging the gap between employees and Austin's tech scene. But her true passion now lies in helping families navigate the complexities of mental illness and addiction.

Dee's journey began in 2000 when she received a Bipolar Disorder diagnosis. Struggling with additional challenges, she found solace and strength in faith and community. Today, 23 years sober and miraculously healed of her Bipolar Disorder, Dee's life is a testament to resilience and divine intervention.

Her past experiences are the bedrock of her leadership. She's a seasoned entrepreneur, having built and run businesses, and even launched a non-profit in 2012 to support prisoners re-entering society. Her passion for service extends beyond boardrooms – she trained as a Stephen Leader, establishing a thriving Stephen Ministry at her church, offering one-on-one support and guiding others through their own hardships.

Dee's diverse skillset encompasses healthcare, college ministry, executive recruitment, and most recently, guiding high school students through the college application maze. This wealth of experience is now at the heart of her work at Story Ministry, where she drives operational excellence and helps families find hope and healing.

Beyond her professional achievements, Dee finds joy in the simple things – spending time with her husband, Layne, their Labrador Retriever, Lacey, and their growing family in the Texas Hill Country. Her life is a tapestry woven with faith, service, and the unwavering belief in the power of connection and community.

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Joseph McCausland 

Security and Safety Director

Joseph McCausland (Sgt. Mac) has always had a huge heart for people, even to the point of risking  his life for God and country in the central highlands of Vietnam.

Joseph served for 22 years in the active army and army reserves. Since his retirement from military service, Sergeant Mac has been an advocate for active and veteran military and their families for over thirty years. Joseph is the Official Secretary, Head of Security, and member of the board.

 

Joseph's favorite Bible Verse:

John 3:16 -

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

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Brandon Ponciano  

Studio Director | Christian Rapper | Advocate

 

From the bustling streets of Austin, Texas, to the quiet solace of a Minnesota church, Brandon's journey is one of resilience, redemption, and the unshakeable power of faith.

 

Growing up in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, skateboarding became Brandon's escape, a counterpoint to a path that diverged from traditional expectations. Experimentation led to legal trouble, and a move to Minnesota saw him engulfed in the throes of addiction. Yet, amidst the darkness, bloomed the greatest joy: fatherhood to his children, Riley and Brennan.

 

But the struggle was real. Battling addiction, legal battles, and a fractured family, Brandon finally sought help in San Antonio, his unwavering commitment to recovery a beacon in the storm. Though faced with the agonizing loss of his children's custody, he refused to be defined by his past.

 

It was in the confines of a jail cell that Brandon truly hit rock bottom, a turning point that ignited a newfound freedom from addiction. Prayer became his anchor, perseverance his compass. He emerged with a renewed spirit, securing a job, rebuilding bridges with his kids, and discovering a hidden passion for Christian hip-hop music production.

 

Today, Brandon's story is a radiant tapestry of triumph. He leads a stable life with his supportive wife, his skills finding purpose as a foreman, and his faith shining brightly in the church community. His music, infused with the lessons learned in the fires of adversity, inspires and uplifts.

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Donald Baisa 

Podcaster | Prayer Team | Advocate

The life of Donald Baisa wasn't always smooth sailing. Once lost in the currents of darkness, he discovered a life raft in the form of Jesus Christ. Now, as host of the "Walking on Waters" podcast,

 

Donald navigates the choppy waters of spiritual warfare, sharing his personal insights and practical tools to help you find your own sea legs.

 

With a heart for service and a voice forged in fire, Donald invites you to step out of the boat and walk on water alongside him, experiencing the power of God's love and the triumph over even the fiercest storms.

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Joseph Lawry

Advocate | Mentor | Author

Born in Washington, my life was a tumbleweed, tossed by winds. Adoption landed me in New Mexico, but I found trouble, shadows my companions. Lost in darkness, I ended up in prison.

 

Within those walls, a spark ignited. The clang of doors woke me. In the mirror, I saw the boy who'd strayed and the man hardened by confinement.

 

Redemption bloomed. I vowed to be the help I craved, the help to pull others from the abyss. Prison transformed me, a lost soul into a fierce advocate for second chances.

 

Today, I walk a path of purpose. I bridge the gap between the boy on the edge and the man forged by fire. I counsel, guide, mentor, the help I once yearned for. My voice, once choked, now resonates with hope, urging others to find their light.

 

My story is not just survival; it's a testament to the human spirit. Even stormiest skies yield rainbows, and the path to redemption, though fraught, leads to a vibrant future, a second sunrise.

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