Ohio adoption agency, providing pregnancy support & adoption services in Toledo, Columbus and Cleveland

2021 Fireweed Retreat Recap

This is the logo for the Christ-Centered Fireweed Retreat for Birth Moms that takes place in Beulah Beach, Ohio


Hello, I'm Jennifer Mae. I chose adoption for my infant daughter 18 years ago, and I am the author of my own published story, "Fireweed," and founder of the Christ-Centered Fireweed Retreat for Birth Moms. I firmly believe that no mother who has placed a child for adoption should feel demonized, discarded, or her dignity denied.



Finding Hope Through Redemptive Grace

In an attempt to show up in the gap of Christ-centered post-adoptive care, the Lord called me forth in creating Fireweed Retreat, a Christ-centered retreat for birth mothers. My ultimate goal in creating Fireweed Retreat is to bring hope and point towards healing all through Jesus and His redemptive grace.



Birth Moms, You Are Seen, Honored, and Respected!

I wanted to create an environment for Fireweed Retreat where birth moms felt safe but not forced to share their stories; something I knew I would have needed in my most raw years after placing my daughter for adoption (over 18 years ago).  Equally as important to me is an environment where birth mothers who may not know Jesus can feel just as seen, honored and respected as much as Christ-following birth mothers while receiving a weekend filled with pampering, validation, Biblical truth, and Christ-centered tools for their self-care tool belts.



The Message Was Rooted In Biblical Truths

During Fireweed Retreat in 2021, we had Laurel Bruhl speak on healthily navigating emotional triggers. She gave us all tangible tools including diagrams that explained in layman's terms what goes on in the brain when a trigger occurs, relevant Bible verses, and mindfulness tactics rooted in Biblical truth.  



Isaiah 61:3

My support team showed up and loved well during the retreat. Bobbi, a birth grandma, showed the women how they deserve to be treated with kindness, dignity, and care by a mother figure. Barb, an adoptive mom, poured her heart into the ladies showing them that they are special women to be respected and treasured just as much as their children are. Stacy, a licensed counselor, met with any birth mom who needed to step out of group sessions to process one-on-one. And I, Jennifer Mae, had the honor of being front and center to see God bring His beauty from the ashes, which was truly the weekend of Isaiah 61:3.



Beauty From Ashes

More beauty from the retreat--and beyond; I am so grateful to partner with Beauty For Ashes, which is the annual retreat, also at Beulah Beach, for foster and adoptive moms that occurs right before the annual Fireweed Retreat.  I have attended their retreats in 2019 and in 2021, and I have invited foster and adoptive moms to get involved. This past year, adoptive moms wrote notes of encouragement in the back of journals that I gave to our birth moms at Fireweed Retreat. Those journals were so impactful for the women.



Precious Daughters of the King!

If I could have bottled up the reaction these women had to the knowledge that they are loved and cared for, it would forever fuel my passion and set so many on fire for loving and serving these important and precious daughters of the King! Oh how moving it was to see these precious women realize exactly what Christ-following adoptive moms think and feel about them.


Jennifer Mae, founder of the Christ-Centered Retreat for Birth Moms in Vermilion, Ohio
bon fire at Beulah Beach in Vermilion, Ohio at the Fireweed Retreat for Birth Moms at sunset
Spirit of Faith Adoptions, hosts of the Christ-Centered Retreat for Birth Moms Welcomes all Birth Moms In Need of Support
I read this out loud to the (13) 2021 Fireweed attendees.  I printed it on beautiful paper and gave one to each birth mom so that every time they read it, long after the retreat ended, they could be reminded of exactly who they are in Christ! ~Jennifer Mae

Barb’s Story:

I Had The Privilege of Volunteering at the Fireweed Retreat

My husband and I adopted our daughter through SOFA over 11 years ago. Our adoption is closed, at our birth mom’s request. Because I have a very special place in my heart for her and for all birth moms, it was my heart’s desire to love on the birth moms at the 2021 Fireweed Retreat. My goal was to let them know how special they are. I wanted them to feel nurtured and taken care of. 

As an adoptive mom, I’m representing all adoptive moms in the eyes of birth moms. I got to sit at a table at Beauty for Ashes the weekend before, inviting foster and adoptive moms to write a special note of encouragement in the birth moms’ journals.  I believe this really helped to bridge the gap to form those important connections among the adoption triad members.  

I’m so excited to be planning for this year’s retreat. I can’t wait to see the girls again, to hug them and to see what God has been doing in their lives. I loved their personalities, and that each person was unique in their own special ways.  I got to watch some pretty special friendships form, and I love the way we beared witness to God, making beauty from the ashes. 

These are the journals the adoptive moms wrote in for the Birth Moms at the Fireweed Retreat

Our Christ-Centered Ministry for Birth Parents Must Continue! 

We’re excited to build on the successes of the past and plan to add more speakers, grow the retreat’s capacity, and offer more opportunities to wrap around these women in more regular support meetings through this important, Christ-centered ministry. 

Where Two Or More Are Gathered Together.....  (Matt 18:20)

Please CLICK HERE to partner with us financially, through prayer, by spreading the word, and/or by volunteering your time.

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