Anna Dee Olson spends her average days giving away other people’s money through her Assistant Director position with the Scholarship Foundation at Minnesota State University, but her passion is in her hobby: motivational speaking. She spoke in Lancaster at the Sion Lutheran Church, on December 6, 2017, to share of her experiences and encourage women. Olson was born and raised in an Amish Community in Wisconsin, but when she was 24-years-old, she decided to leave.
“One of the hardest decisions I’ve ever made,” Olson said. “I knew I was leaving behind everything I had ever known… my biggest fear was not knowing if I’d survive. Where am I going to go when nobody cares anymore?” But Olson also said it was a relief, having the freedom to make her own decisions, to learn from her own mistakes.
Olson joined the ELCA church upon leaving the Amish, attending with some friends who were helping her with her decision to leave. Olson went through three years of counseling to work through internal turmoil. “Just to work through some of the issues, some of the things that were the beliefs of mine,” Olson explained. “I truly believed, the day that I walked out, that I would go to hell in eight years.”
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