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2016 Photo Contest Winners
By: Kelly Shedlock

Our 2nd Annual Photo Contest was a huge success! The photos just kept coming in and they were all amazing!!!! I wish I could put all of them in the magazine and on Facebook. The winning photos are on the website and Facebook page.

Thank you to all who submitted photos. I enjoyed each and every one of them, as did our judges, the office staff. They had no idea who sent them in, just the title of the photo and where it was taken. I told them it was going to be very difficult. I even had one "judge" say to me, "I'm mad at you...too many great photos, I don't know which ones to vote for. Thank you to all our judges—you had a really tough task, but you did an awesome job with the judging.

I personally love photography. I love taking photos and always take too many on my trips. God has blessed us with many amazing, breathtaking places, animals and things to see in this world. We need to "stop and smell the roses." We get so busy with work, family, sporting events, etc. that I think we forget to stop and really enjoy the little (but huge things) God has given us to enjoy. I hope this contest had given you some time to really look at this word and all the beauty.

We had some members with multiple entries, and they won in 2 categories, but per the rules they can only win once. I am also including those photos that won, but could not receive a 2nd prize.

I hope you enjoy these photos as much as we did in the home office. Start looking for photo opportunities for our 3rd Annual Photo Contest in 2017. I can't wait!

See the full list of winners and their photos.

2017 March for Life
By: Kelly Shedlock

Our Presence at the 44th Annual Right to Life March on Friday, January 27, 2017 in Washington, DC is extremely important. First Catholic Slovak Ladies Association supports the position of the Pro Life Movement.

The FCSLA is once again offering free transportation from the FCSLA Home Office in Beachwood, Ohio, for this very important trip. For the past few years we have filled two buses for this march. Again this year we will reserve two buses for the March. Our organizations are proud to encourage our members along with many young students from area Catholic High Schools to participate. It is a very rewarding experience to actively participate and help relay this very important message of supporting the Right to Life mission.

2017 March for LifeWill you join us? Please call Kelly at the FCSLA home Office. Her phone number is 800-464-4642 EXT. 1051, or you can email her at for details or questions and to reserve your seat on the bus before December 1st. The buses fill up quickly and seating is limited, so don't wait until the last minute to reserve your seat.

If you would like to attend and are unable to join those leaving from the FCSLA Home Office, please look online for information and transportation. Call your local church or diocese, as they may be able to help.

Art Contest Winners
By: Kelly Shedlock

First, thank you to all who entered the 2nd Annual Art Contest!

Second, you are all winners!!!

The drawings that came in were absolutely amazing!!! Our youngest entry was 6 and she draws better than I do! All of you are so very talented! The details of each drawing were incredible. The judges had a very tough time.

Everyone that entered received a special gift just for entering.

Congrats to our Grand Prize winners! I had to add honorable mention to the list of grand prize winners because we had so many good ones. The judges had a few that were tied and we just couldn't choose.

Once again, thank you to all who submitted their drawing—you made this a very successful contest. I really enjoyed each and every drawing that came in. I hope those who entered this year will enter again next year. And if you didn't get a chance this year, please enter next year!

Here are our winners (click thumbnails to see larger images):

Ages 6 & Under

1st Place
Art Contest WinnersTitle of Drawing: Hello Kitty Mermaid
Name of Artist: Clare Freaney, Avon OH
Age: 5
Branch: J-457
Quote from the Artist: "I Wish I could have Hello Kitty Mermaid as a pet because I love to swim and we would swim and play together."

2nd Place
Art Contest WinnersTitle of Drawing: Maggie's Famous Horse
Name of Artist: Maggie Sejba, Fairlawn, OH
Age:  6
Branch: J-380
Quote from the Artist: "I am about to ride on my horse named Margaret. She is imaginary."

Ages 7 to 10

1st Place
Art Contest WinnersTitle of Drawing: My Fur Family
Name of Artist: Lily Lehtinen, Cary, NC
Age: 10
Branch: J-029
Name of Pets: Hermit Crab - Crystal, Cat - Calvin, Mini (black) Dachshund - Phoebe and one more mini (red) Dachshund Lucy (not in the drawing)

2nd Place
Art Contest WinnersTitle of Drawing: Tiny My Hermit Crab
Name of Artist: Alexa Knapp, Cranberry Twp., PA
Age: 10
Branch: J-115
Quote from the Artist: "This is my hermit crab, Tiny. She loves to crawl in the sand. I love watching her."

3rd Place
Art Contest WinnersTitle of Drawing: Fuzzy Butt
Name of Artist: Clare Yakich, Brunswick, OH
Age: 9
Branch: J-453
Quote from the Artist: "I want a bunny rabbit because a bunny is fuzzy."

Honorable Mention
Art Contest WinnersTitle of Drawing: My Pet Rats
Name of Artist: Parker Lash, Lower Burrell, PA
Age: 8
Branch: J-126
Name of Pets: Super Rat & Chilly
Quote from the Artist: "They are friendly and fun to hold. They like peanuts and pineapple for treats."

Honorable Mention
Art Contest WinnersTitle of Drawing: Sader Pup
Name of Artist: Briana Pavlik, Sheffield, OH
Age: 10
Branch: J-198
Name of Pet: Sadie
Quote from the Artist: "Sadie is sniffing her new ball outside."

Honorable Mention
Art Contest WinnersTitle of Drawing: I Love Koalas
Name of Artist: Ryan Sams, Lorain, OH
Age: 8
Branch: J-198
Quote from the Artist: "I love koalas so much, they are so cute and fluffy."

Honorable Mention
Art Contest WinnersTitle of Drawing: Spike the Blowfish
Name of Artist: Anna Yakich, Brunswick, OH
Age: 7
Branch: J-453
Quote from the Artist: "I like it because I like its spikes and because I like when it blows up."

Ages 11 to 13

1st Place
Art Contest WinnersTitle of Drawing: Puurfect Pet
Name of Artist: Virginia Kouba, Auburn, NE
Age: 13
Branch: W-024
Quote from the Artist: "My cat Stone recently died. This is the type of cat I would like to have. I would name it Cursor. I miss having a good listener around."

2nd Place
Art Contest WinnersTitle of Drawing: Bandit
Name of Artist: Morgan Plagens, Elkhart, IN
Age: 13
Branch: J-058
Quote from the Artist: "A picture of my dog Bandit sitting."

3rd Place (tie)
Art Contest WinnersTitle of Drawing: Pets
Name of Artist: Giavanna Feschuk, West Mifflin, PA
Age: 11
Branch: J-018
Quote from the Artist: "This is a cat I want. I would name it Whiskers. Instead, I own three dogs."

3rd Place (tie)
Art Contest WinnersTitle of Drawing: Longing for a Dog
Name of Artist: Julia Zdrojewski, Belle Vernon, PA
Age: 13
Branch: J-157
Quote from the Artist: "This is the dog I wish I could come home from school to every day, he would give me kisses."

Honorable Mention
Art Contest WinnersTitle of Drawing: Zesty the Mixed Breed Dog
Name of Artist: Ann Koppitch, Shaker Hts., OH
Age: 12
Branch: J-355
Quote from the Artist: "Zesty happy to be home."

Ages 14 to 15

Art Contest Winners1st Place
Title of Drawing: Doggie
Name of Artist: Marisa Plagens, Elkhart, IN
Age: 15
Branch: J-058
Name of Pet: Bandit

2nd Place
Art Contest WinnersTitle of Drawing: For the Love of Pets
Name of Artist: Mya Agee, New Springfield, OH
Age: 15
Branch: J-192
Quote from the Artist: "My two very different cats—Tiger & Shadow—and my fancy goldfish, Pearl."

3rd Place
Art Contest WinnersTitle of Drawing: My Dream Horse Trots Away
Name of Artist: Natalie Latosek, Luzerne, PA
Age: 15
Branch: J-362
Quote from the Artist: "A horse, any horse I wish someday I might have to love."

Matching Funds Program

The FCSLA Matching Funds program is a way for branches to get involved in the community to raise money for charitable and benevolent causes. The projects should be a branch sponsored activity and should invite all area members to participate in the activity. Below are the guidelines and forms you'll need for the program.

View completed Matching Funds projects.

FCSLA is Expanding!

View past articles about FCSLA's growth and new branch openings.

Fraternalist of the Year Award

Youth Fraternalist of the YearThe First Catholic Slovak Ladies Association is proud to announce the selection of Marilyn K. Sestak of Tabor, SD as our 2016 Fraternalist of the Year. Marilyn is a very generous and dedicated member of FCSLA and is always willing to lend a helping hand by donating, volunteering or helping wherever needed. Learn more about Marilyn.

Each year, branches are asked to review their membership for deserving candidates, and consider a nominee. We are gratified to receive so many nominees who are very wonderful and worthy Fraternalists.

Meet our previous Fraternalist of the Year winners:

Youth Fraternalist of the Year

Youth Fraternalist of the YearWe are proud to announce that John Lorence Dzurec of Branch S-481 has been named the FCSLA 2016 Youth Fraternalist of the Year.

John is a fine example of Slovak academic achievement, volunteerism, athleticism and warmth. He is the son of Dan and Mary Ann Radachi Dzurec and the brother of Kazmir Dzurec . Learn more about John.

Meet our previous Youth Fraternalist of the Year winners:

This year we are once again asking for your assistance in recognizing a young individual for his/her volunteer activities. In all our branches there are individuals who stand out in a crowd because of their achievements. This is your opportunity to nominate an outstanding young member from your Senior or Junior Branch.

State Fraternal Alliances

Many States offer scholarships and awards, or have recognition programs. If you go to the website of each state, you will view what each state has to offer. If you have a problem viewing their website or if you would like information for a particular state, phone our Fraternal and Youth Director, Kelly Shedlock, at the Home Office: 1-800-464-4642 Ext. 1051.

State Fraternal Alliances Archive

Fraternal Activities Archives

Learn about some of our previous Fraternal Activities.

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