LOCAL AUTHOR TO TAKE THE STAGE WITH JOYCE MEYER IN HERSHEY, PA
Jere Gish – The Hershey Chronicle Posted: Friday, October 25, 2024, 12:30 pm
Joyce’s visits to the Chocolate Capital of the World always draws a big crowd and her events sell out faster than an M&M can melt in your mouth. And this year, those who attend will also be getting a little extra treat as a local author, Stefanie Hoffa, has been invited by Mrs. Meyer to share the stage and discuss her premier book entitled, “Clean Slate.”
Never in her decades of world-wide tours has this 81-year old icon shared the stage or interviewed anyone outside of her studio in St Louis, Missouri, so it’s no surprise that rumors are spreading as many wonder if this will be Joyce’s swan song. I had the opportunity to meet with Joyce and Stefanie back stage an hour before opening night at Hershey Stadium to discover just that.
Joyce, who gets more hip and youthful with each passing year, sat erect in her director’s chair with the quiet confidence of one who is a veteran in this arena, and looking striking in her red leather jacket. Aside of her sat Stefanie, and although she appeared equally confident and welcoming, it was clear by the look of wonder in her eyes that this was new territory for her.
“So how did the two of you meet?” I asked, as I hit the play button on my recorder.
“Through God” Joyce boldly stated with a twinkle in her eye and an almost undetectable smirk as she looked me in the eye to witness my reaction, then looking over to Stefanie with a wink and a nod.
“Let me explain further,” Stefanie piped up I have been envisioning meeting Joyce and speaking it out loud ever since I knew that someday I was going to write a book about my journey. Joyce’s teachings and books have helped me get out of some very dark places and I earnestly desired to not only meet her one day, but also work with her and continue her legacy of speaking to women and changing their lives.”
“So it is true, then,” I probed “this is your last performance, Joyce?”
“Now I didn’t say that, Jere. Don’t you be putting words in my mouth.” Joyce wagged a long finger at me revealing her impeccable red polish manicure. “But as I do begin to transition from life on stage to studio only, I thought I’d change things up a bit to keep things interesting. Besides, Stefanie’s story is a unique message that many women have been waiting for and needing for a long time coming. Anything I can do to help her spread the message faster and wider is my pleasure to do.”
I have to admit, my original motive for this story was to be the first to discover if Joyce was going to retire, but now I was curious to hear more about Stefanie’s story.
“Ok, tell me more about this story. What is so unique?”
Stefanie glanced down at her hands, as she nervously fidgeted with her wedding band. “Well, I don’t think it’s all that unique. It just seems unique because not enough women talk about it, especially Christian women. There is a general expectation that certain mistakes are forgivable for women, and some are not. And I am here to say that a woman is NOT her past mistakes, that is not her true identity. There is a way to start over, begin again with a clean slate. And….”
“And now it’s time for her to start speaking about it all over the world,” Joyce excitedly interrupted, “and it starts here today on my stage.”
I found myself leaning forward in my seat as I waited for Stefanie to continue with more details about her story. “Go on, tell me more.”
“And spoil the ending?” Stefanie teased. Why don’t you stay for the event and I’ll save a copy just for you.