I have moved house ten times in the last ten years, so filling in forms can be a bit of a nightmare. Anyone who has moved house will know the stresses and strains it can bring. Whilst it can be a beneficial change perhaps giving you more space, a bigger garden, or a more convenient location, other changes we face may be less positive.

Torch Trust supports thousands of people in the UK and around the world who have experienced a life-altering change: the loss of sight. Every day in the UK, 250 people are told that they have irrecoverable sight loss. In a society where everything is geared around sight, this can be a traumatic and disabling change. 

For Carole, her sight loss was devastating; she said: When I saw the consultant eye specialist she said you must stop driving and you must stop now, which was a great blow. I feel now I have lost all my independence.” Carole’s central vision has deteriorated so much that she cannot read or write. While she is grateful to have people in her life to help, it has been a journey to come to terms with these new limitations. I have to learn to accept that I have to be prepared to ask other people if I really need help”, she says. 

Not left or forsaken 


Torch Trust was recommended to Carole by a Christian friend. Carole receives New Daylight Bible reading notes in audio and has also been able to borrow Christian novels and study books from our accessible lending library which serves nearly 1,000 blind and partially sighted people in the UK

Everyone’s story is different, and for Gayle-Ann it was a sudden trauma that caused her to lose her sight. In an altercation with her abusive partner she suffered irreversible damage to her retinas. The consequent surgeries left her with glaucoma and in her words, it has been a downhill spiral from my last procedure”. 

For many of us it is hard to imagine how Gayle-Ann would have felt going through this, but she says, at that point I had developed a relationship with Jesus Christ… I had come to accept what my situation was, and I knew whatever the outcome would have been I would be ok because I have God and He was there to encourage me in times when I felt low”. Gayle-Ann has benefitted from a free audio Bible player from Torch Trust and she loves it, and carries it around the house and listens to it as she falls asleep. 

"I have to learn to accept that I have to be prepared to ask other people if I really need help."

Extending God’s love

At Torch Trust we are passionate about sharing God’s love with people who are blind and partially sighted, whether they were born with a visual impairment or have experienced sight loss later in life, we want to support them to encounter Jesus and grow in their faith. One of the ways we do this is through our local groups. Sue leads our Milton Keynes Fellowship Group. Her husband John, who is blind, started the group 30 years ago and it has gone from strength to strength. Sue said: We try to do all that we can to make those who come feel loved and welcomed. Not everyone who comes is a Christian, but we hope that they will hear the gospel and are strengthened and encouraged.”

When Sue met her husband John over 40 years ago, he had overcome opposition and prejudice because of his blindness to become a social worker. A mutual friend introduced them and they just clicked’. Her family and friends were unsure, she said, they weren’t happy but I’m not sure if that was because he was blind, because he was Welsh or because he was a Baptist!” She says they could see that there was love there but had concerns as to how he was going to look after their darling daughter.

John and Sue’s shared faith has brought them through the highs and lows of 40 years of marriage. However, Sue is honest about how difficult it is for John, particularly in this season, like many who are housebound there can be a real sense of isolation and loss. But he listens to Christian radio, and reads his Bible and other resources he gets from Torch Trust to encourage himself.

He will never fail

So, whilst we all experience change in our lives as Christians, my hope for you is that like Carole, Gayle-Ann and John you will know God is with you and you will be able to draw comfort from Him.

""Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God." (2 Corinthians 1:3–4)"

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