Category Archives: Uncategorized

Beauty Perseveres

As we come to the end of Autism Awareness month 2017, I would like to thank the contributors to our Autism Moms and Dads Blog Interview Series for sharing a bit about their lives in the world of Autism.  It has been particularly interesting to get the Dad’s perspective this year in addition to the Moms. I have also enjoyed the opportunity to re-connect with both local and national friends and make some new FIN friends along the way. Many thanks to those that interviewed: David Rizzo, dad to Danielle from New Jersey, Ruth and Rick Robins, parents of Tripp in Virginia, Tim Craig, dad to Clinton, from New Jersey, Janet Shouse, mom to Evan Shouse from Tennessee and Michael Hoggatt, dad to Summer from California. You are all an inspiration to me and it was a pleasure to “meet” you and your children through these interviews. 
Blessings to all those …

Dear Church Leaders…

Many thanks to Jenny Emory Redick who wrote the following poignant letter to church leaders on her Facebook page.  With her permission, I share it here because this letter so eloquently captures the essence of  why we at FIN work so hard to bring awareness and educate on faith inclusion.  
Jenny lives in Virginia Beach and is mom to two lovely girls, one of which has multiple disabilities. She was a FIN Board Member not too long ago and we have always appreciated her outspoken and inspirational writing style…

Jenny and her husband, Jim Redick

Dear Church Leaders, I love you all, and think you are amazing – Especially when you are real and admit humanity in all of its failings. Your jobs are hard. I appreciate you!

You don’t know many of us, but let me introduce myself as an example of a rather large group of people who have faith and …

Autism Moms Interview #6 Katie Moormann

Katie Moorman and I have been friends for many years.  We first met at Living in Holland when I helped to facilitate this parent support group at Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church.  When it was time to hand over the reins, so to speak, of coordinating LIH, I knew (maybe even before Katie did) that she was the natural choice to lead.  Now many new families are meeting as part of LIH at Crossroads Church in Norfolk and our little group is stronger than ever!
A talented writer, Katie shares the very real challenges that affect her family as she and her husband raise a child with multiple disabilities.  I know all autism moms (and dads) will appreciate her honesty and insights.  Love you, Katie!- K. Jackson
 Interview with:  Katie Moormann
Coordinator of Living and Holland Ministry at Crossroads Church, 1127 Surrey Crescent, Norfolk, VA 23508
Mom to: Iva “June” Moormann, age 6 1/2
Contributing author for,  Loving Samantha …

Autism Moms Interview #2 Lorna Bradley

Our second interview for the FIN Autism Moms Blog Series is with Dr. Lorna Bradley.  Lorna lives in Texas and is the author of the inspiring book, Special Needs Parenting; From Coping to Thriving.  If you attended That All May Worship-2015, you may remember Lorna for her fun stories and easy manner.  I am amazed at  her enthusiasm and energy.  (She runs marathons for fun!)  Thank you Rev. Bradley for participating in our Blog Series and for all you do as an Autism Mom.
Interview with: Rev. Dr. Lorna Bradley
Position/Title: Fellow, Hope and Healing Institute, //
Question: How old was your child when he/she was diagnosed with autism?  Can you share how you felt when you received that diagnosis?
Lorna: Our diagnosis journey is a bit different than some.  We started when my son, Craig was around 4. His behaviors told a mother’s heart that something was not right. His initial diagnosis was ADHD, …

Special Audience Night with the Virginia International Tattoo

On Tuesday, April 19, 2016, at 7:30 pm a large part of the Hampton Roads Disability Community will come together to participate in one of our area’s biggest and most celebrated performances of the spring season.  At the Scope Arena in Norfolk, VA the Virginia International Tattoo will perform its final dress rehearsal for a very special audience; people with special needs and their caregivers and families.
The following was the curtain call/welcoming speech for this event a few years ago.  It explains a bit more about the performance and why FIN is a part of this spectacular event.
The Tattoo has become, for our community, an opportunity to experience the highest level of performance from musicians from Virginia, the United States and around the world. Tonight you will see and hear performers from our local community alongside people from Canada, New Zealand,and Sweden, to name a few.
One of the things …

Autism Moms Interview #1 Karen Jackson

On the Eve of World Autism Day and the start of April, Autism Awareness Month, I hope this is the beginning of a meaningful series of interviews with autism moms. So many woman are doing wonderful, courageous and creative things and I hope to highlight some of that this month through our FIN Blog.
To start the ball rolling, so to speak, I begin by interviewing myself. A bit unorthodox, yes, but it was a very interesting exercise and I am always glad to share about what it is like to be an autism mom.
If you have not been contacted yet and would like to contribute, please email Karen at
Interview: Karen F. Jackson
Position/Title: Executive Director of Faith Inclusion Network of Hampton Roads and Author of Loving Samantha
Question: How old was your child when they were diagnosed with autism? Can you share how you felt when you received that diagnosis?
Karen: Samantha …