It’s a Party for Patty!

A Party for Patty

Today we want to honor and celebrate someone who has had a huge impact on Velvet Ashes! Check out these sweet words from women in our community about Patty S.!

Kim and the Board of Directors: Patty S. was here at the beginning. One of three founders, she welcomed the unformed idea of Velvet Ashes, and applied her wise heart and attuned spirit to its formation. She helped give it shape and a name, invited others in, and guided the growth of a community that would ripple out around the world.

Patty served in a variety of roles during her time leading Velvet Ashes — Editor, Writer, original Board Member and Secretary. She traveled thousands of miles to be at significant events in the life of VA, and made countless video calls work across time zones. She generously gave of her expertise in coaching to offer depth and insight to VA’s annual online retreats. These are but a few of the visible contributions she made; be sure that there are even more unknown and unacknowledged contributions because Patty serves without fanfare or pretense.

Patty’s influence here at Velvet Ashes will outlast her because she has worked faithfully and diligently from her vibrant connection to Christ, the Vine. The endeavors to which she dedicates herself thrive, and we are fortunate to have been one of them.

Jocelyn: Since I met Patty four years ago, I have had various rich encounters with her at multiple conferences or trainings for our company. I deeply appreciate the way she pauses and truly listens to whomever she is speaking with, demonstrating her value of others and her care for the whole of a person. She is wonderful at asking questions and pointing others back to the Vine, which I’m sure is why the Father has placed her in such influential roles.

I also really value the way she slows things down, refocuses on Him, and helps other re-calibrate their minds and souls to remember what is most important- that we are Loved and chosen by Him, and that we cannot do anything apart from Him. She helps me forget about myself, others, and tasks in order focus on Him, his words, and what he’s speaking to me in the moment. Patty is one of the most kind, attentive, and gentle people I have had the privilege of brushing shoulders with, and I really believe that is evidence of how she has chosen to walk faithfully in his presence throughout her life. 

Renee: Everyone needs a Patty.

Sometimes I imagine the great delight God has when He places an extra-special gift into the life of one of His kids. I imagine our good Father grinning with glee, knowing the joy He has marked out through this gift for His beloved child.

Patty is that kind of a gift. God let my path cross with Patty for almost 20 years in China and those days are etched in my memory as gifts from my good Father. Patty is one of those rare saints who can simultaneously hold the Light to show me the way through the darkest night, but also toss her head back in raucous laughter with me at the latest joke.

She could race against me through the subways and streets of Beijing in a fierce competition to see who could beat the other person to the restaurant across town, but also share the gentle compassion of our Great Shepherd’s heart when I needed it most. She could slap down the winning pair of jacks to win a card game and dance with joy over the victory, but also walk with me slowly down a path in Thailand, carefully carrying my broken heart so I didn’t have to bear it alone.

She abides in the Vine and lets His love and grace flow out to all of His sheep around her. She laughs, loves, teaches, and mentors. When I think of Patty, I think of life. The heart of her Good Shepherd beats strongly in her and we experience the goodness of God in her presence. She lives the very joy and grace of the One she adores. She reminds me of what is true and right and good. It really is true: everyone needs a Patty (even if she will beat you across town in a race).”

Patty, thank you for being such a humble, sweet, important part of the Velvet Ashes community! We are so grateful for you!

You can read Patty’s wise words through her posts HERE.

Photo by Jamie Street on Unsplash


  1. Amy Young December 31, 2019

    Patty — I love being a part of the Patty party!!! I remember Friday nights in the Blue Room of the Mac going through the branding exercises for “Velvet Ashes” — I put the name in quotation marks :)!!! You know why :). Oh my word, it was so hard to land on just the right name :). I wish we had kept of a list of all of the names we tried out before Danielle landed on this most perfect name. I loved dreaming, planning, and figuring this space out with you. You (and Sam) are dear friends and I am blessed that our paths crossed for so many years. And I am sad that I don’t have more Patty in my daily life now. You are wise, fun, and generous. I love you!!! Amy 🙂

    1. Patty S December 31, 2019

      Thank you, Amy! Those early days of Velvet Ashes were quite an adventure of the heart and a stretch of our imaginations! I’m so grateful for those days and the privilege of being a part of something so dear to our Father’s heart! Much love to you, Amy!

  2. Patty S December 31, 2019

    Wow! I’m in tears, friends! What a surprise as I starting reading today’s post.
    I am so amazed at how our Father has beautifully grown and shaped Velvet Ashes! And I am in awe of the caliber of women He has brought to this community. What a life-giving, enriching gift you all have been in my life!
    Thank you!

  3. Shelly Page December 31, 2019

    Oh Renee, you said it well: we all need a Patty in our lives. And like you, Amy, I am sad I don’t have more Patty in my daily life. But, I am so glad that you, Patty, have been in my life, making it a better place with your genuine care and compassion, energy and joy, and great questions. You have called good things out of me with well-timed challenges. You inspire me with your ongoing pursuit of this journey with Christ, becoming who you are in Him and for others. Thank you for living a devoted life and inviting us to come along with you.

    1. Patty S December 31, 2019

      Shelly, you are so kind. I am thankful for YOU and our long friendship and times of teaming together. I am richer for knowing you!

  4. Joan January 1, 2020

    What beautiful tributes to such a generous, thoughtful, wise and kind servant that I am blessed to call my Sister. Each of you have perfectly captured elements of Patty to a T. I love you Patty!

    1. Patty S January 1, 2020

      Joan!!! If we are the sum of the significant people in our lives, you have definitely upped my score! I love you!

  5. Danielle Wheeler January 1, 2020

    Dear Patty, I don’t know anyone whose life calling is so clearly articulated – “to shepherd the shepherds.” You have shepherded my heart in so many ways over many years, and I want to thank you. I know Him more because of you, and I know this is true for so many people around the globe. Your delight in Him and His delight in you is beautiful to behold. I love you so!

    1. Patty S January 1, 2020

      Thank you, Danielle! Your words encourage me deeply. You are so dear to me and it’s always a joy to journey together with you! I love you, friend!

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