Missionary Spotlight: Meet One of OHI’s Newest Missionaries — Susan Manning!
“You’re never going to believe this,” laughed Susan Manning, “but I first went to OHI to recover from show choir.”
In June 2019, Susan had just finished a full season performing with her show choir, and she was completely exhausted. She was also working overtime as the CEO of Manning Pools. She was ready to transition the company over to the next generation, so she booked herself a week at OHI to consider her future. What she got was so much more…
“I had such a revelatory experience in my one week at OHI, that I just knew I needed to spend more time there,” said Susan. “I was at a crossroads in my life, and I wanted uninterrupted time to figure out what my path needs to be for the next 30 years. The OHI Missionary Program seemed like the perfect opportunity to help others as I helped myself.”
Susan dubbed her 13-week missionary stay “The Great Unwinding.” It started with changing her relationship with food. Susan tipped the scales at over 200lbs, and was addicted to salt. Embracing a juice cleanse and all-raw diet was a revelation to her.
“When I came to OHI, I was taking 14 different medications,” said Susan. “After eating a raw diet for 13 weeks, I now take just 2 medications. My blood pressure is much improved. My blood sugar is completely under control. I’m down from a size 20 to a size 12. OHI showed me that I can be strong and healthy without pharmaceuticals, and has taught me how to use food as medicine. And I can honestly tell you that drinking 100oz of water a day sets the foundation to an entirely new body.”
But it was the missionary program as a whole that opened her up to change. “During my stay, I read ‘The Gospel on Mary Magdalene’ by Jean-Yves Leloup,” said Susan. “It completely changed my life. There is a mantra I took from it that I have really focused on — ‘The human body is a journey through matter toward light.’ That was an enormous spiritual breakthrough for me. As a missionary, it was such a gift to help others on their personal journey toward light. Everyone took to calling me Miss Joy, because I was so happy to be present for whatever God wanted to reveal to me in each moment.”
As a missionary, Susan also found profound joy in teaching classes. “I discovered that I love teaching exercise classes,” laughed Susan. “The exercise class is designed to focus on lymphatic movement. The gentle exercise movement cleanses the lymph system, and leaves you feeling fantastic. Beyond the exercise classes, I absolutely adored the vocal toning class. The group relaxes, the light is dim, and we sing 8 different tones each associated with a different energy center of the body. My spine felt more aligned after that class every time. And as a singer, I honestly believe that class healed my voice. It is much softer and deeper now. My old show choir friends wouldn’t recognize it if they heard me sing now.”
So now that she’s healed her body, mind, and spirit, what’s next for Susan? “I want to start another business, a non-profit, and give back to the OHI Scholarship Program so more people can experience the breakthroughs I experienced,” smiled Susan. “I asked God for a group of women who want to find solutions for big problems, and I think I found that during my missionary stay. The friends I made while I was there will be my friends for life. We’re going to do great things together!”