Nineteen-year-old Maurane practiced witchcraft. She grew up in a Belgian Catholic household, but became intrigued by New Age beliefs and practices. This religion promised her that a New Age of heightened spiritual consciousness and international peace would arrive and bring an end to racism, poverty, sickness, hunger, and war. And to taste a small part of this coming New Age, she was told she must actively pursue a personal spiritual transformation through traditional occult practices such as tarot reading, astrology, and mediumship (communicating with spirits of the dead).
Maurane lost herself in these practices for four years, hungering for a world of peace and seeking some kind of spiritual lifestyle. She went off to college to study art and lived in an apartment with roommates who she did not get along with. They would often party until the early hours of the morning and had little regard to the mess they caused in their home. She got into fights with them all the time. Maurane was miserable.
But then she heard the gospel. She accepted Jesus as her Savior and radically shifted her perspective on her life.
GEM missionary Aggie Alvarez met Maurane in a Friday afternoon small group, the same week that she had accepted Christ into her life. Aggie saw how hungry she was for knowledge and learning truth, so she offered to meet with her every week to go through the Bible.
Aggie & Maurane
"Every week she just grew more in love with the Word. And she began to change her life." Aggie said. "She was just like a sponge….She would have tons of questions and she would text me, and say, 'Aggie, why does it say this?'And every week as we went through the Discovery Bible Study, she gained a new revelation of God. I was teaching her to let the Word reveal itself to her, for her to learn how to feed herself."
One day, Maurane realized she needed to change her attitude towards her roommates. "You know, Aggie," she said, "I used to hate my roommates. But now, as we're reading the Word, I'm realizing that I'm there for a reason; and I'm there to pray for them."
With Aggie's guidance, Maurane is continuing to learn more about God every day and how to walk this new path of life and leave a life of witchcraft behind her.