Our Staff

Valentyna Pavsyukova

Valentyna was born in 1983 in Zaporozhye, Ukraine, to a family that did not practice religion due to the pressures of Communism. Yet from an early age Valentyna felt a strong desire to know God. She was deeply affected by her grandmother, who taught her the Lord’s Prayer as a child. Valentyna’s mother entered her name in the U.S. Green Card Lottery, thus at 18 she left Zaporozhye for Medford, Wisconsin. Far from home and knowing little English, she went through a very difficult period. The Lord’s Prayer helped sustain her, leading her to a deeper love for God as Merciful Father. About that same time, Valentyna began to feel powerfully drawn to the Catholic Church, which she would enter in 2007. This awakened a burning desire to become a missionary, a desire which would find fulfillment in the founding of the nonprofit Chalice of Mercy, a charitable and pro-life mission to Ukraine. Chalice of Mercy has a special outreach to care facilities (clinics, hospices, orphanages, etc.) and also to doctors, stressing medicine as a beautiful vocation in the service of human life and dignity. Valentyna now splits most of her time between doing mission work in Ukraine and organizing doctors’ pilgrimages to Medjugorje. – See more at: http://chaliceofmercy.blogspot.co.uk/p/about-us.html#sthash.7qug3aNk.dpuf

Daniel Thelen

Daniel is currently studying theology in Rome, Italy and God-willing will be ordained to the Holy Priesthood in the summer of 2015. His love for Ukraine began in 2008 when he met Valentyna and learned about the great need for spiritual and physical help in her country. This desire continued to grow over the years and in 2010 he officially joined Chalice of Mercy as its Secretary. During Easter of 2013 he was blessed to visit Ukraine and served during the Easter Liturgies in God the Merciful Father Parish. During his stay he was deeply touched by the wonderful kindness and generosity of the Ukrainian people and of their great hospitality towards him. He considers it the greatest of honors to be part of this mission. – See more at: http://chaliceofmercy.blogspot.co.uk/p/about-us.html#sthash.UjPVId50.dpuf

Gretchen Thibault

Chalice of Mercy is a combination of all of Gretchen’s passions combined. As a wife and the mother of nine, four of whom are adopted, Gretchen has a passion for her marriage, family, adoption and orphan advocacy. Gretchen and her husband have adopted a son and daughter from Ukraine, both of whom have Down syndrome. This experience created in her a huge heart for Ukraine. She has a strong desire to witness to the dignity of each and every human life, from the very youngest of life, to those with disabilities (especially orphans), and to the sick and elderly dying with dignity. She loves her Catholic Faith and desires to serve God in whatever way He chooses to use her. – See more at: http://chaliceofmercy.blogspot.co.uk/p/about-us.html#sthash.UjPVId50.dpuf

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