Waldena "Wendy'' Cleveland, of Thomson, says her road to recovery has been a long and laborious journey.
But through the power of prayer and singing gospel music at her Evans church, In Focus Ministry Center on Old Evans Road, Ms. Cleveland said she has been healed.
Waldena (Wendy) Cleveland with the In Focus Ministry Church in Evans has produced two gospel CDs.
Photo by Jim Blaylock/Morris News Service
"My testimony is that the Lord set me free from depression," she said.
Ms. Cleveland said she has since realized there are more people in need of hearing a message of hope.
These days, she's continuing to offer that message through song.
From visiting churches and performing songs on her freshman and sophomore albums, Give Him the Praise and He's Changing Me, Ms. Cleveland said that through the years she has appeared on television stations locally and in New York and Atlanta.
She said she also has made many trips to other countries, spreading the gospel through her music, giving performances in lands as far away as Jamaica; Aruba; Guatemala; Columbia, South America; Santo Domingo; St. Vincent; Curacao; Ghana; West Africa; Nairobi and Kenya.
Born in the Canal Zone of Panama, Ms. Cleveland said she began her singing career in a Baptist church at an early age.
She said it wasn't until she was 18 that she moved to Brooklyn, N.Y., to attend Long Island University on a music scholarship.
"Once I got my bachelor of arts in music, God began to open doors," she said.
Before she knew it, Ms. Cleveland said, she was inundated with invitations to perform her songs at local and foreign churches throughout the world.
People who heard her sing, she said, began asking for copies of her music.
"After I saw the need for mission work, I began to take tapes and CDs back overseas (to the people there)," she said, mentioning that she plans to visit and perform in more churches and countries in the future.
"Jesus' message is love, peace and joy," she said. "That's a feeling people can feel in their life all year round."
To purchase one of Ms. Cleveland's CDs, she can be reached at 597-8306.