Spirited Change

The new Christmas movie this season, Spirited, starring Will Farrell, Ryan Reynolds, and Octavia Spencer, is a new musical comedy take on the Dickens classic A Christmas Carol. At the core of every version of this story is the question, “Can people change?” 

In this story, there is an effort from outsiders (Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present & Future) to change the heart and mind of the greedy, stingy, mean-spirited Ebenezer Scrooge. The effort is only successful through the realization that there are relationships in Scrooge’s life that he did not realize matter to him. He was stuck in a place of grief that was never resolved, making his heart tiny and cold. In reconnecting with the important relationships in his life, the grief is resolved and he regains a new sense of purpose. When has this happened for you?

Within a few weeks of turning 23, I became pregnant. I knew I had choices, and I had exercised my choice to terminate pregnancies in the past, and I did not want to go through that agonizing emotional pain again. I also knew I could not raise a child and continue living the party life. 

The level of change that took place was fast, dramatic, and complete, I still don’t really know how it came to be. I don’t recall any ghosts visiting me in my dreams, and there was no knight in shining armor who rode in to rescue me. I just knew my life needed to be different – for my child’s sake, and for mine. I dropped my entire circle of friends and found new friends who were much better influences in my life. I met a man who loved me and my son whole heartedly and treated us both with exceptional kindness and generosity. Eventually, I responded to the call to ministry I’d been hearing since I was very young. I’m not sure if I changed, or if I just found my true self – the caring, responsible, generous and loving person who was waiting for my better self to wake up and thrive. I have learned that the only person I can change is myself, and that change is inspired by a desire to be the best person I can be for the people I love.

~Rev. Jan Taddeo

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6 Responses to Spirited Change

  1. Lisa says:

    Rev Jan, I love your reflection and your picture! Change can be hard, but it can also be such a blessing in our lives.

  2. Carol Richardson says:


  3. Lydia M Patrick says:

    What a powerful share! Thank you!

  4. Daniel Bailey says:


  5. Erika Shell Castro says:

    Lovely ❤️

  6. katrina yurko says:

    Thank You Rev Jan, Your post is very much like reading an open journal, so personal and soul seeking . I wonder if the turn you took at 23 eventually lead you to us and our community…I think so, one step through life at a time. I’m so glad you took that step!

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