The first time I visited Madonna House as a working guest, I was 19 years old. I immediately felt like the character in C.S. Lewis’ book, The Great Divorce, who upon arriving on the outskirts of heaven, finds that the grass there is more substantial than he is, and consequently experiences it as painful to walk on the ground.
After my first week I seriously considered leaving—but where would I go? I had taken a leave of absence from college, and I no longer even had a bedroom at home. (A couple of my six younger siblings had moved into it.)

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