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Valarie Santoy

Valarie Santoy

Campus Minister

I grew up in a non-Christian home where God and prayer were periodically mentioned but never explored. I remember visiting churches of all denominations but never regularly attending.

When I entered the 4th grade, my family moved to Midlothian, Texas. My brother found the move particularly difficult. He pulled away from our family and dived into a life of drugs. My parents made a hard decision to kick him out of our home that year, which left our family broken.

I made some great friends in middle school who attended church and invited me to go. I continued going through high school. While in youth group, I gained more and more knowledge of Scripture and of the Lord. I proclaimed Christ, but I was just a morally sound girl who found the Christian box easy to check.Learning more about Scripture, I held one parable dear to my heart. The parable of the prodigal son (Luke 15:11-32) was one that I could lay over the history of my family with hopes that my brother would return one day. The summer of my senior year the speaker at our youth camp happened to speak on this parable. It was the first time the elder brother in the story was explained to me. I saw the parallel of how I treated my parents and the Lord, and that night the Lord ignited the kindling.

Shortly after I moved to Denton, Texas, I started attending The Village, became a Covenant Member and plugged in. God has healed relationships in my family and has redeemed the knowledge of the Word and Him to minister to others. It is so evident that the Lord has had His hand on me my whole life, and He has been unbelievably gracious to protect and guide me in the path that has brought me here.