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“We’re kind of flying the plane while we’re building it.” – Max Ventilla

This quote perfectly describes our journey with starting The Connection! And honestly, at first, we didn’t even know our destination. God said, “Take off and trust me.” So, we did.

We can make our plans, but the Lord determines our steps. (Proverbs 16:9)

We’ve done our best to keep Him in the middle of everything and to listen for His direction. But we’ve also Googled, researched and asked wise counsel for help.

We've been very blessed to find a few women with experience in community-based ministry that were willing to mentor and advise us. They have been huge blessings!

But, here’s the thing…

We had a difficult time finding training, books or networking groups that served our niche. Many times, we felt like we were all alone figuring out how to build this plane.

A few months after we started, I felt strongly that I should record what we were doing and that, someday, we would need this information. Sometimes when we look back on the past, our memories aren’t very accurate and this record needed to be accurate.

I had no idea how this writing would be used. But again, God nudged with “Trust me.” And I did.

About a year later, a couple friends, who had relocated out of the area, wanted to begin a ministry similar to The Connection, so they reached out to us for advice. We had great discussions and helped as much as we could – including giving them a copy of this diary that I had been writing. The ladies were grateful. They said the information was very valuable to them and taught them a lot.

I kept writing.

Occasionally, the Board and I would discuss how this diary could be used to help others. And what other ways could we support new ministries? How could we find other women that were flying and building too?


The logical thing to do was to turn our story into a book. Self-publish on Amazon. Use Amazon and social media to reach those untrained plane pilots!

But Jesus said, “No, go home to your family, and tell them everything the Lord has done for you and how merciful he has been.” So the man started off to visit the Ten Towns of that region and began to proclaim the great things Jesus had done for him; and everyone was amazed at what he told them. (Mark 5:19-20)

Soon, our book, “Let’s Get Together: The story of a unique women’s ministry,” will be available on Amazon. Readers that are new to The Connection will be amazed at what the Lord has done. We pray that our story will provide encouragement wisdom to other newbies in the ministry world.

But we aren’t finished building yet!

We would also LOVE to begin a networking group for community-based ministry leaders. We have been praying that God would provide a flight pattern and connect us with these women. Already, two amazing ladies have literally shown up on our doorstep. They are both eager for the companionship of others that understand what they are going through. We can learn so much from each other!

Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed. (Ecclesiastes 4:9)

Are you or someone you know in ministry? Do you desire to be a part of a Christian community of women leaders that you can learn from? Do you want to bless others by sharing what you have learned? Please shoot us an EMAIL. We’d love to talk!


Preorders are now being taken for the ebook version of "Let's Get Together" on Amazon. Click HERE to read the book description and order your copy. When the ebook goes live on September 24, your ebook will be on its way to your inbox!


Did you hear that we have also created a journal to be used as a companion piece to the book? “Let’s Make Plans” has writing prompts, book quotes and scripture to help you plan the dream that God has placed on your heart. Stay tuned to find out more. Visit this PAGE for updates.

Would you please pray that “Let’s Get Together” will reach the people that need it most and that it will be a blessing to them?

Dear Father, Thank you for all the wonderful things that you have accomplished through The Connection. You have been so, so good. Please use this book to benefit anyone that reads it. See that it gets into the hands of those that are flying blind. Show us how to reach out and form a community of leaders that want to serve You to the best of our abilities. Oh, that you would bless The Connection and this book and expand their territory! Please be with us in all that we do, and keep us from all trouble and pain! In Jesus’ name, Amen! 

Mandy Hood

Mandy Hood is co-founder and executive director of The Connection. She authored the book, “Let’s Get Together: The story of a unique women’s ministry” which publishes in the fall of 2023. She hopes the book will be a stepping stone to building a supportive network of community-based ministries. Mandy and her husband have been married for 43 years. Together, they enjoy camping and traveling. Every year, they look forward to GramCamp – three days of spoiling and fun with their three favorite young men. 


Barb Lange 8 months ago

I love this!! When God speaks you know it and it sounds like He clearly led you through this writing project. I can't wait to read it!

Stephanie Ziebarth 8 months ago

I love that you are also beginning to network ministry leaders. There is a need for that! Can't wait to read more about that.

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