A local woman will soon be speaking at the same podium as Warren G. Harding, Calvin Coolidge and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Gayle D'Ambrosio Crabtree will be delivering the opening invocation at an event organized by the foundation of Family and Friends Fighting Against Child Sexual Assault at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington D.C. this Saturday.
The FACSA event also includes other participating organizations, such as Hope for Healing.Org. Speaking Out Against Child Abuse, and Stop the Silence.
Crabtree and other speakers will be stepping up to the microphone to support the victims of child sexual assault and other abuses.
“Adults who are victimized are welcome as well, and supporters of those victims,” Crabtree said in an interview on Wednesday at Jacksboro United Methodist Church, which happens to be pastored by her husband, Rev. John Crabtree.
“We hope to send the message to victims that they are not alone,” which she says is important to hear because, “often the victim is isolated and she or he may feel very uncomfortable speaking out.”
Crabtree knows quite a lot about what these victims need.
She spends much of her time traveling between her husband's churches and another church at Strawberry Plains, where she works with victims of abuse on a daily basis.
In addition, she is an author, blogger, speaker and online radio personality who specializes in enlightening people about the prevalence of child abuse, even in church congregations.
And though Crabtree is delighted to have been invited to participate in the FACSA event, she is nervous about talking at such a historical site.
“I'm scared to death,” she said.
“They just asked me to do the invocation today,” she added, looking to her husband and smiling.
“He has been horribly helpful,” she said, laughing. “He's the one who sent the paperwork to FACSA.”