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Highlights from Hope Blossoms 2024!

May 11, 2024

On May 8th, 360 friends and supporters gathered at Columbia Country Club for 
Hope Blossoms – our event celebrating and supporting the women and their children who journey with St. Ann’s Center

Whether you joined us in person or in spirit, thank you for helping to make this event a success! Here are just a handful of the many highlights and memorable moments:

Mary Lou Goehrung, St. Ann's Center's Board President, opened the evening and introduced Wilton Cardinal Gregory, Archbishop of Washington, who helped us begin our celebration in prayer and provided uplifting welcome remarks.

Sister Nancy Downing, CEO of St. Ann's Center, thanked and encouraged all in attendance:

“Most importantly tonight, we celebrate the many successes of the mothers and children who came to St. Ann’s at a time of crisis, and later left St. Ann’s with heads held high, and dignity restored, and their hearts filled with hope… And while we celebrate tonight, we also acknowledge that our work is not yet done.”

Hon. Michael Steele, our Master of Ceremonies, invited Event Co-Chairs Pam and Dennis Lucey to help recognize our Board, Staff, Volunteers, Sponsors, and the Daughters of Charity, who founded St. Ann’s Center, now in its 164th continuous year.

Michael Steele shared his own "St. Ann’s Story" before introducing Dr. Amber Andrews, alumna of St. Ann’s programs, who shared moving testimony about her experiences as a young mother at St. Ann's, and the role faith has played on her journey with and beyond St. Ann’s.

Msgr. John Enzler took the stage as our “Chief Fundraiser,” helping catalyze many generous individuals, families, and organizations. Thanks to these donors and our Sponsors, Hope Blossoms raised over $500,000 to support St. Ann’s Center’s programs!

Hope Blossoms culminated with the presentation of the Mary McGrory Advocacy Award to honoree of the night Sister Mary Bader, D.C., who was recognized for her 18 years of leadership at St. Ann’s Center (2005 - 2023).

Gathering with you was a privilege and a pleasure. On behalf of all the women and children who will be touched by your generosity, we thank you from the bottom of our hearts!


Sister Nancy Downing, CND
CEO, St. Ann's Center for Children, Youth and Families


Sponsors make Hope Blossoms possible! St. Ann's Center wishes to acknowledge the following sponsors:

Cory and Joe Rogers

Kammie and Scott Bell
Pam and Dennis Lucey
Kathy and Ed Quinn

Judy and John Ritz
Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Washington

Special Thanks

  • Pam and Dennis Lucey for serving as energetic Co-Chairs for Hope Blossoms 2024
  • Wilton Cardinal Gregory, Archbishop of Washington, for providing our Invocation and Welcome
  • Michael Steele for being our fabulous Master of Ceremonies (once again!)
  • Monsignor John Enzler for his creative and endearing fundraising help
  • The Daughters of Charity, who founded and continue to influence St. Ann's Center
  • Our Board of Directors and Staff for their dedication to St. Ann’s Center
  • Our Hope Blossoms Event Committee for their care, creativity, and enthusiasm
  • Our Honorary Host Committee for their promotion, support and dedication to this event's success
  • Our Volunteers for providing their support and assistance this evening
  • Tommy McFly for the memorable video celebrating Sister Mary Bader's impact
  • Sarah von Pollaro and Urban Petals for creating a vision of nature and beauty at our fingertips
  • Michael Colella, PictureLock Films for his time to capture photographs that will be cherished for many years and for such an unbelievable slide presentation
  • Mary Lou Goehrung and Signs By Tomorrow for crafting and donating our signs and placards
  • First Hand Productions for their help with the sound and projection making our evening sparkle

Want to be part of Hope Blossoms 2025?

Contact Ellen Toups about Sponsorship and Volunteer opportunities at [email protected]