SAN ANTONIO — Each day for Montina Cleveland begins with prayer. It was in her prayer room, after moving to Texas, that she was moved by faith.
"It all started with a prayer. I remember I was in a prayer and just asking God what can I do," Manna Reign Chocolates, co-owner, Montina Cleveland said. "I had discovered that I was gluten intolerant and I felt this pressing upon me that said make gluten free sweet treats."
With no culinary background, she turned to the internet to learn how to become a chocolatier.
"It was all really just trial and error to be honest," Cleveland said. "I never thought I had a creative bone in my body, so it's a shock to me that I'm actually doing something that I have to be creative in doing, but it gives me so much joy."
After testing her gluten free and vegan recipes on her husband and neighbors it was in time to take her business, Manna Reign Chocolates, to market.
"I love seeing when we go out to markets to see people's faces and seeing their expressions when they taste, look at my chocolates. That gives me so much joy," Cleveland said.
The joy in her craft now has her leading the way for others in the chocolate world.
"Being a black owner is something to be really proud of, and being a black owner as someone who's a chocolatier," Cleveland said. "That's pretty exciting to know I'm doing something a little bit different, and kind of leading into something else that someone else can follow behind."
Now two years into business ownership, Cleveland continues to be lead by faith.
"Definitely challenging, it has its ups and downs but I'm enjoying every bit of it and I'm learning so much," Cleveland said.
Cleveland has a message for those who are looking for their next calling.
"You just gotta do it. Whatever it is you are trying to do. You can't say you can't do it because you don't know until you try," Cleveland said.