Smile Again

Smile Again Ministries is a 501(c)3 nonprofit ministry, serving families who have lost a child, offering a retreat experience and counseling services to surviving parents and siblings.  Our mission is to help hurting people find peace and hope.

Thanksgiving Smiles and Blessings

Yesterday Judy and I were surrounded by the people we love. Our son and daughter were there with their children. Judy’s 86 year old mom served as our Matriarch ordering us around when it came to picture time. She might not be able to hear as well as she used to, but she still commands attention when she speaks.

As expected, the house was filled with laughter, good food and stories of deer hunting, wolves, and how very cute our newest granddaughter Elise Michelle is. We ate until we were stuffed. Once dinner was over the women settled in to do crafts led by Nichole and the guys vegged on couches or in chairs watching football, playing foosball and pool. Some of the kids joined in the crafts. Others simply roughhoused with John Caughlan until he was too tired to go on. New memories were made. A family tradition lives on.

Judy and I are so blessed to be a part of this extended family. A family that has seen our share of suffering and pain. The chair I mentioned in my last blog was indeed empty, but Michelle not forgotten.  How could she be when our newest granddaughter, Elise Michelle, arrived on the scene. Elise was adopted by our daughter and her family this Fall. What an incredible blessing she is. She is a reminder of life in its purest form and fragility. A new life filled with hopes and dreams.  

When we think back on 2014 it has been a year of blessings. We thank God for His continued faithfulness each and every day. His mercies and promises truly are new every morning. God bless, Pat & Judy

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Background photo: the forest surrounding Whitetail Lodge,
Smile Again Ministries' retreat center.

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