The Unfolding Story



From Our Founder


Carissa Martin
Founder and President
Monarch’s Way

Nineteen years ago, in an arena in St. Louis, I was encountered by God’s presence and He began unfolding the plans he had for my life. I've called it my burning bush moment. 

As a lady in a stunning long jacket walked across the stage, I said to myself, “I’m going to have a jacket like that someday.” No sooner had the words crossed my mind I heard, “That’s not all you will have like her someday. You will have a home for troubled girls.” Instantly I was in a full on conversation with the Father and he was telling me how he had placed this desire in my heart at my design as he brought memories up before me. In the conversation I asked, “Where would it be?” It was at that moment that I saw the Big House and He said, and I quote, “No one understands why Mr. Whishard built this house, but it is for you and this ministry.”

Much has happened in those 19 years – far more than could be told here. But at a glance there was the excitement of the vision, calling it forth, praying, believing and spending time with Mr. Whishard. Then came the death of the man, the death of the dream and a lot of tough life lessons. 

Through this journey, God has never left my side and what I thought was dead has tenaciously given way to running after His heart to heal the brokenhearted and set the captives free!

It’s an interesting thing how a seed falls onto the ground and dies before it truly lives.

I’ve always had a passion to see others realize their full potential and to help them remove the barriers that stand in the way of them walking in their destiny. I’ve had the privilege of teaching and coaching in a private academy for 12 years. I’ve worked with teens and their parents for 8 years as a prayer counselor. Through my own trauma and the roles I’ve had working with teens, I've learned that trauma, heartache and hopelessness knows no bounds. A verse of perspective for me has been John 10:10, and although it says we have an enemy, we have an even bigger promise that Jesus came so that we could have life– an abundant, full life!

Recently a 12 year old was sharing her struggles in her home and how it was causing her to have thoughts about ending her life. The hardest part was hearing that her mother, in frustration told her to go ahead and follow through with it, so long as she knew she’d go to hell for it. It was the absolute last confirmation that I needed. No matter the cost, I will no longer sit idly by while I, along with your help, can do something to provide a place of safety for hurting girls. I can’t continue to say “Not me. Not now.” No more excuses. I am compelled by the Father’s love and call of God to provide a place of hope and transformation. A place where girls can grow without condemnation and can learn how to successfully navigate the hard times that come their way. What if our at-risk-teens can be safer sooner? Do they have to become addicts? Do they have to hit rock bottom? What if they encountered the power, presence and unconditional Love of Jesus? What if they knew their identity as a daughter of the King? What if they discovered that they were born to accomplish great things? Let's help them heal. Let's help them dream. Together, let’s give her wings!