Friday, July 29, 2011

Mary's Shelter July Newsletter - Summer Soirée Coming Up!


Mary's Shelter July Newsletter

 Vol. 3, No. 4 



Even by our standards, June and July were very busy months at Mary's Shelter.  We have filled our new home with mothers and children.  We have witnessed the birth of two beautiful new babies in the last two weeks.  We have prayed for and ministered to one of our residents who has been in and out of the hospital with a terrible illness.  Our residents' schedules are very full  with weekly in-house classes, Saturday evening speakers, mandatory job searching or volunteering, and monthly house meetings.  We look at our ladies and wonder where they would be had they not found their way to Mary's Shelter.  We are only able to help them because of the help we receive from our friends and supporters.  


  In two weeks, we will host our 2nd Annual Summer Soirée.  The turnout last year was great, but this year it will be even greater.  It is a truly awesome evening that is not only fun, but incredibly life-giving.  Last year, you all provided us with enough money to run our shelters for an entire year.  We were so encouraged by that and cannot wait to see what God has in store for Mary's Shelter this year.  The amazing women I work with on the Soirée Planning Team truly give their hearts and souls to this great event.  We cannot wait to see you all on August 13th! 


God Bless.

 Kathleen Wilson, Director 


Let no one ever come to you without leaving better and happier. Be the living expression of God's kindness: kindness in your face, kindness in your eyes, kindness in your smile.

-Mother Teresa       







Send in your RSVP today for the 2nd Annual Mary's Shelter  Summer Soirée and Fundraiser!    


Come show your support for Mary's Shelter by joining us for an evening of fellowship, live music, and dinner catered by Carrabba's Italian Grill.

Saturday, August 13th, 2011

7-10 pm


St. Michael the Archangel High School, Fredericksburg, VA

Guest Speaker - Abby Johnson, Former Planned Parenthood Director turned Pro-life Advocate, and author of the best-seller, unPlanned

Didn't receive an invitation in the mail?  No worries!  Simply email your RSVP to

And remember, there is NO CHARGE to attend this event.

However, if you are interested in sponsoring a table and being invited to our VIP pre-reception with Abby Johnson, please email us for more information.  

We look forward to seeing you all on August 13th! 


Mary's Shelter New Home Dedication - June 25th


We dedicated our new home to Miss Dale Featherston , long-time parishioner of St. Mary Catholic Church in Fredericksburg and founder of the Germanna Nursing Program.  Dale passed away on February 28th and her daughter, Susie Kilian, kindly donated her beautiful furniture to our new shelter.  Susie felt a connection with Mary's Shelter since she herself was placed with adoptive parents as a baby.  She and Dale were reunited 5 years ago.   Susie and her husband flew in from St. Louis for the dedication and to receive an honorary plaque of Our Lady.  An identical plaque is now hanging in our new shelter over a framed newspaper article about Dale.  It is our hope that the residents who live there will be inspired by Dale's story to make positive changes in their lives.  


Special thanks to Fr. Ed Bresnahan and to everyone who came to witness this beautiful and moving event. 


Here are a few words from Dale's daughter, Susie:


Mary's Shelter provides more than just a place for women and their children to reside in. The dedicated staff and volunteers give hope, affirmation, and the opportunity for positive change in the lives of all who live there.  


It is with great pride that the house on Charles Street has been dedicated to my mother, Dale Featherston. She devoted her life to helping others, and I am truly grateful that her legacy will live on.

Thank you for your devotion and kindness. Blessings to all.

Susie Kilian










Photos courtesy of Lori Elizabeth Photography

Mary's Shelter in the Free Lance-Star!

If you didn't get a chance to read about us in the paper last week, you can read it by clicking here ! 

Announcing Baby John



Born July 5th, weighing 5 lbs, 5 oz.


photo courtesy of Lori Elizabeth Photography  

Announcing Baby Paris 


paris 01 

Born July 21st, weighing 6 lbs, 9 oz.


photo courtesy of Lori Elizabeth Photography  


Thank You!


*Thanks to Berkeley Whitley of the Children's Home Society of Virginia for coming and speaking to our ladies.  The resources you provide are invaluable.  Thank you for making our residents aware of all the options available to them.


* Thanks to Amanda Winn   and Carrie Santiago for the amazing doula services, childbirth classes, and parenting classes.  Your enthusiasm is truly infectious.  We cannot thank you enough for being a part of this ministry.


* Thanks to Jennifer Jones for taking charge of our knitting classes and really inspiring the ladies.  You have a gift!


* Thank you to Regina Hiney, the tireless leader of our monthly Book Club and Bible Study.  Even residents who never, ever read get something out of the discussions generated at your Book Club meetings. 


* Thank you to Wanda Barrett and the Angels Watching Ministry for coming on a monthly basis to minister to our ladies and children.  We are grateful for your loving and gentle touch with our ladies who are in such need of love and affirmation.


* Thank you to the ladies of the La Leche League who come every month to encourage and educate our residents about the benefits of breast-feeding.  


* Thanks to our wonderful summer babysitters, Jenna LeMay and Helen Rathgeb.  Our weekly classes would be pure mayhem without you!  


* Thank you to "The Ladybugs" for the 10 beautiful baskets filled with everything a newborn baby might need.  We are so grateful for these thoughtful gifts for our babies!


 *Thank you to all the underwriters and table sponsors for this year's Summer Soirée.  Without you, this event could not happen.  And without this event, Mary's Shelter could not continue.  Thank you for being such an instrumental part of our ministry.