Stephen and Ghost

Ghost Magic.

Sometimes at Given To Live we wish we had superpowers. Powers that would heal wounds, both physical and emotional, that would forever comfort the disturbed, that would teach a bully about the hurt they cause, teach that difference is simply difference and not a threat.

While we don’t have superpowers we do try to create a little magic. Some magic that says you matter. That says you’re valued.

Steven matters.

A trip to Paris to see Ghost. His first time abroad, on a plane, at an indoor gig. His voice the one that mattered, his choices.

Magic doesn’t happen without help, a conspiracy of kindness, compassion and generous hearts.

We picked Steven and his family up from the airport the day before the show and took him to his hotel. The staff knew about Steven and he was welcomed as a VIP, then a chessboard was delivered to him in person in his room as they may have known he had a soft spot for cheese. Later a conversation about dinner led us to a wonderful restaurant where Steven was again treated as an important guest - which he was.

Show day, Ghost day, had time for him to see some sights but a deadline we wanted him to see the venue before doors opened so he could feel comfortable.

We were met by Ghost’s tour manager, George, and then he proceeded to take Steven on a magical tour of the venue. Visiting with Shane, who was looking after the meet and greet, Jason, the merch manager who took amazing care of Steven and then a trip onstage, behind stage, guitar techs handing out picks, a one on one explanation of how The Cardinal’s sound works.

And while Steven is still onstage a gentleman with a slight accent, no mask, naked eyes and a wide smile joins Steven. Tobias Forge - Papa, Cardinal, founder and force behind this ghostly clergy chats and welcomes Steven.

Magic. Magic that can heal a sore heart.

And there’s more to come, there’s still a show and when you’ve met Tobias Forge things wouldn’t be complete without meeting Cardinal Copia. So meet The Cardinal he does and gives him the beautiful banner he helped his sister make. And sees a great rock n roll show. And smiles.

Smiles a lot and Steven has a wonderful smile reflecting a kind and generous heart. A sharp mind and quick sense of humour. A great love and knowledge of metal music. He’s thirteen, fantastically creative, loves to sew, is still growing and already pushed past six feet tall.

We don’t have superpowers but hopefully the magic created by so many can breathe healing into wounds left by bullies and nurture his wonderful spirit.

We know you matter, Steven. Don’t ever forget that, don’t ever forget the magic. Ghost magic.