Click HERE to access our most recent Newsletter and read all about the ways in which together we are fulfilling our mission to aid the orphaned and abandoned!
What a tremendous blessing LV received when we were contacted in January about a possible article to be written for The Catholic Spirit newspaper. I (Katrina) was hesitant to share our story, remarking to Laura that we were so small, not doing enough, others are doing more etc. HOWEVER, I realized that if by the article we could reach even just one more beautiful adoptive family in need or touch the heart of even one person to show or teach them what they may not otherwise know regarding the orphan crisis, then it would be more than worth it! And that is exactly what happened. I was contacted by someone in our little town who told me of a family desperately trying to raise funds for their adoption. THEY NEED ALL OF US. THEY NEED YOU. THEY NEED TO KNOW THEY ARE LOVED, SUPPORTED, and A LIGHT in this world. And we will try to do all of those things, with your help. We were also contacted by a wonderful organization in our back yard! I had never heard of The Foster Closet and am so happy they reached out to our organization to see if we would partner with them to provide for foster children in our community. Stay tuned for ways you can help, or go to their website and contribute! What a WONDERFUL organization!
So many others reached out to acknowledge the work YOU and our little Laurencia are doing to help little ones in need. Some even donated! We are nearly at a level to be able to provide another family grant but we're not quite there yet. We haven't started our fundraising for 2017 in earnest as I'm still working on getting our Newsletter for 2016 giving out! I do apologize for the delay but stay tuned for the news we know you're waiting to hear. We simply cannot wait to have the ability to provide encouragement and support in the form of another grant to a family we KNOW is deserving and in need.
For those who missed it, here is a link to the article. http://thecatholicspirit.com/news/local-news/monticello-couple-supports-orphans-adoptive-families-loss-infant-daughter/
As always, THANK YOU for your support and for helping us to fulfill our mission by your prayers, encouraging words, donations, and selfless giving!
A shout out to Vincent (Vinnie) Lai, a colleague of mine (Katrina) at Boston Scientific. Jennifer Heywood, also a colleague who works in the same location as Vinnie, made a very generous donation to LV and wanted to especially recognize Vinnie by way of her donation. In lieu of some THING, Jennifer decided that she'd rather recognize the gift of Vinnie's life by giving to impact other lives. I can't think of a more generous or thoughtful gesture. I work with some of the most caring and giving people on the planet! THANK YOU Jennifer and HAPPY BIRTHDAY VINNIE! *I only wish I had a photo of Vinnie in his signature bow tie to add to this post :)
As many know from our Facebook Page, we, Laura and Katrina, are running a 10 mile race tomorrow to raise funds for a very special orphanage in Ukraine and specifically to provide heat to this orphanage. Only two weeks ago we were made aware of this urgent need (via another non-profit, Life2Orphans) and since all funds from the 2015 L.O.V.E. 5k are already allocated for families and other grant purposes, we had to think up another Laurencia's Orphans Victory Event to raise the much-needed funds quickly, thus, the 10 mile race challenge was born! While neither of us were ready for such a race and we knew that raising that much money in such a short time was really stepping out in faith, we never doubted the extreme generosity, selflessness and grace-filled charity of our friends and family. It is with EXTREME gratitude that we are able to announce that JUST TODAY, JUST UNDER THE WIRE, our goal has been met! The fundraiser was seeking $2000, however, Life2Orphans received other donations and thus was in need of only $1165 after those donations. Well, Laura and I each received EXACTLY 10 pledges of money and the total amount raised is $1235!! The orphanage can also use medicine and other healthcare items (these particular orphans have AIDS we are told). What a pure blessing you all are to these children!!
Since October is also pregnancy and infant loss awareness month, we are running in memory of little ones and children who have passed away. This is SUCH an honor to us. We asked each donor if they had a special intention and we plan to pray for these families and children as we run tomorrow.
Below is a listing of each sponsor and the person in whose honor they pledged the funds. We firmly believe that the light of each of these children still shines brightly -- through their families, friends and loved ones. WE WILL NEVER FORGET and we keep them all close in our hearts and minds.
THANK YOU for praying for us and supporting us in this endeavor and in doing so, helping us once again fulfill Laurencia's Legacy of LOVE.
Sponsors of the "Little Light of Mine" LOVE Race:
Mile 1: Joel & Gina Dehmer Family in memory of their beloved Chad Dehmer
Mile 2: Kate DeVries Smith Family in memory of her dear, childhood friend Beth
Mile 3: Sarah Johnson Family
Mile 4: McKenzie R. Family
MIle 5: C. Delaney in memory of her dear father, George
Mile 6: Dan & Kimberly Stach, in memory of their sweet baby Stach
Mile 7: C. Hughes Family
Mile 8: Laura Nielsen, in memory of the Nielsen babies who passed away before we knew them
Mile 9: Lisa Denn & June Cyr
Mile 10: Laurencia's Papa & Grandma John & Julie Dehmer in memory of Laurencia Rachel
Mile 1: R. Jones
Mile 2: M. Svitak in memory of her precious babies
Mile 3: Hollee Saville
Mile 4: Peggy Boyle
Mile 5: Dee Dee Weber, for a special intention
Mile 6: B. Kittock, in memory of her beautiful baby who went to heaven 15 years ago Oct. 31
Mile 7: M. Lambrecht
Mile 8: M. Parks family
Mile 9: H. Hodge
Mile 10: B. Loesch
It is with much joy in our hearts that we are able to share with you the Dixon family! This photo was taken just days ago when Esther and Bjorn were finally able to call this special little guy, "Son". Do you see the joy on their faces?Please join us in rejoicing with this family!
Their story has included many struggles, twists and turns which you can read all about on Esther's blog: http://www.estherslittlewonders.blogspot.com/ This is a local family who has shown grace, perseverance and above all FAITH in their journey to their beloved son. Because of the wonderful outpouring of support and all of the race registrations, Laurencia's Victory was able to send a $2000 grant check to the Dixons to help offset the tremendous costs involved with flight and international travel/adoption. THANK YOU for helping us aid beautiful families like the Dixons-who live right in our own community! Esther, being the sweet, thoughtful person she is, provided me this note last night (while still in-country visiting with her new son) despite being very sick and I'm sure VERY tired!
"Our family is deeply grateful to LV for their very generous support of our adoption! We passed court in Ethiopia yesterday and now have a beautiful 3-year old son, and LV's grant money will help toward our travel expenses to bring him home. We first learned about our son when he was not quite 18 months old, and due to paperwork and bureacracy issues, it took 2 years to finally be able to bring him home. We have been so encouraged and uplifted by other people's love and support during this difficult journey, and LV's grant was such a sign of God's generosity and love for us. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts!" - Esther
THANK YOU ALL for helping us fulfill this earthly mission on behalf of our Laurencia in heaven!
We are very excited to announce that registration for the 2nd Annual L.O.V.E. 5k Run is OPEN! Click here to go directly to the ZapEvent Registration site. We are still blown away by the amazing response we had to our first race and are so grateful for every single runner, sponsor, volunteer, supporter and friend. Your 2014 contributions helped so many children and families, as described in our February Newsletter (L.O.V.E. Notes from Laurencia's Victory). But we are not done doing Laurencia's work here on earth and we're counting on your support to make this year an even bigger success!
We have reduced the kids' race entry fee by half this year! We hope to have even more fun with the kiddos with some pre-race kid-friendly activities and lots of goodies for everyone. We LOVED having so many little ones participate last year and this year promises to be even more exciting. For the 5k we will also have two t-shirt options this year, Pink or White (choose pink! choose pink!) <----oops! did I type that out loud? :)
We hope you have all had a wonderful school year and are looking forward to making some great family memories this Summer. We would be absolutely honored if you chose to make one of those memories attending this Laurencia's Victory Event in August.
We are just so darn excited to see whether, together, we can make this year's race an even bigger success so that we can help more families and children.
Check our Facebook page often for updates on the Race or contact us with any questions.
See you at the race!
Finally! We get the sincere pleasure of introducing the Cormican family to you. Tony and Tara Cormican are in the process of adopting a little boy from Africa. Tara was the first person to reach out to LV when we launched. Patiently she waited and prayed for Laurencia's Victory, that we would be successful in our mission and that we would be able to find the answers we needed in order to provide family grants, no matter whether we could help her family or not. What a blessing her prayers have been to us! But Tony and Tara had to have much more patience than that. They have been waiting and waiting to get a referral (child matched to their family) and just in the last few weeks received and accepted the referral! In other words, they know they are going to go get a son! They can't yet share his name or photos but they share their hearts and story very well on their own blog: www.cormicanadoption.blogspot.com. Tara so graciously posted news of the grant LV recently provided to them. It brought us to tears! As you read Tara's words, please bear in mind that YOU are the reason for her thanksgiving to LV. As we read it, we were so proud of our Laurencia and so grateful to everyone who is helping us to fulfill her earthly mission.
THANK YOU Tony and Tara for the great honor of sharing in your story. We will be following along as you work to bring your sweet boy HOME!
The Cormicans also have their own fundraising page (unrelated to LV) on which you can
view a video of Tony and Tara to learn a little bit more about them and hear firsthand why they are adopting: https://www.purecharity.com/cormicanadoption?aff=6ga5k
We are once again honored to introduce you to another Laurencia's Victory grant recipient family. Jess and Ryan Bjokne are a beautiful couple who have been through some extremely challenging times in their journey to have children. Please visit their blog, www.jessicabjokne.com to hear their faith-filled story in Jessica's own words. Jess and Ryan have an extremely unique and extremely inspiring story. You see, the Bjoknes are in the process of adopting the teeniest, tiniest of God's children. They are going through what is called "embryo adoption". Some reports estimate there to be over 600,000 frozen embryos in storage in the U.S. The tiniest among us, the most vulnerable, helpless and in need. What do they need? Just, a chance. Jess and Ryan believe in giving these precious souls a chance at life. As another mom going through this process puts it, "they deserve the dignity of a womb". Indeed. From what we have learned and read, it would seem that this process requires strength of character and heart and faith beyond measure. And Jess and Ryan are filled with all three of these. We are so blessed to call them friends and so grateful to share in their amazing journey. LV was able to pay one of the invoices awaiting the Bjoknes at the transfer clinic (images in the slideshow at the top show J&R at the clinic for their first embryo transfer of three precious souls--go to Jess' blog to learn what happened and where they are in the process). While they will incur many more expenses along this journey, we know they are ever so thankful for the grant from LV and thankful to each of you who made it possible. Jess and Ryan themselves volunteered at the 5k (they were on the race course directing runners!) and they are committed to helping others like them. See? Told you they were pretty great.
Jessica personally asked us for only one thing, prayers. So, would you join us in praying for Ryan, Jess and each of the precious lives waiting for a momma and daddy to call their own?
You can learn more about embryo adoption here and here.
We are so honored to introduce you to one of the very first Laurencia's Victory benefiting families. We first learned of the Watson family and of their adoption journey just last spring. We have been following their beautiful story and were overjoyed to witness them bringing their daughter home recently. HOME! We are simply blessed to know this family and thank God for bringing them to us and us to them! Laurencia's Victory was able to pay a portion of a bill from the Watson's post-adoption fees. This was only possible because of YOU and YOUR support. As many may know by now, adoption is not cheap! While the grant from Laurencia's Victory covers only a small fraction of the large fees involved, our hope is that it might ease at least some of the burden so that this family can focus on showing their new baby girl what it means to be LOVED and to have a family. Thank you for sharing your journey with us Watsons! To learn about the Watson family, please go to their family blog: www.ourobedientlove.com
Here are some more photos because we just can't get enough of this cuteness! Do you see the LOVE, do you see the JOY? By walking along with us on our mission, you get to be a part of THIS! What could be better?