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Mary Jo Copeland: Citizens Medal ‘a very beautiful thing’

REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
President Barack Obama and Mary Jo Copeland share an emotional moment at Friday's White House ceremony.

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Comments (3)

  1. Submitted by craig furguson on 02/16/2013 - 01:12 am.

    God’s work in our community

    This isn’t something that I say lightly, Mary Jo is an example of God’s work in our community, if we’d only take a moment to recognize it.

  2. Submitted by Richard Parker on 02/16/2013 - 11:42 am.

    Mary Jo’s biographer

    Sue Peterson’s too modest to make a big deal of it, but her daughter, Michelle, made the trip to the White House with Mary Jo Copeland. Michelle wrote a biography of Copeland, “Great Love,” published in hardcover in 2003 and currently being updated. Susan Peterson, a retired Star Tribune business writer/editor, is a comment moderator for Minnpost. (Now, Sue, don’t deep-six my comment.)

  3. Submitted by Deb Alexander on 07/26/2013 - 12:22 pm.

    Mary Jo Copeland is my children’s grandmother. No, not by blood, but in effect, she is the only real “grandmother” they know. In fact, it is because of Mary Jo that I even have one of my children.

    In January of 2005, I was 20 weeks pregnant with my fifth child and I was in a bad way. Things had gone very wrong for me and my husband. I was homeless with three of my other children. We found ourselves at Mary’s door, begging for salvation and for housing. What we got was more, so much more.

    I had intended to give my baby up for adoption. It hurt me to see my older children do without and I did not want to bring another child into an impoverished situation such as I was in. Mary Jo hugged me, patted my hand, told me, “We can help your family today.” She looked deeply into my eyes when I told her my plans for my baby and she said, “Rest your spirit while you are here, dear. Talk to God and see what He has to say about it.”

    Well, my son is now 8 years old ( he was born on my oldest son’s 18th birthday – I do not believe that was a coincidence, either ! ) and I still go back to see Mary Jo as often as I can. It isn’t nearly as often as I would like to and certainly not as often as I think about her or thank her because *that* is DAILY. When I do see Mary Jo, I remind her that we thank God for her and that I look at my son every day with the knowledge that if not for her love and support, I would have been denied all the joys of being his mom. I have the book that is referred to above and it sits on my book shelf in such a way that we “see” Mary Jo every day. We include her in our prayers every time we say them. This woman is Minneapolis’ Mother Teresa. She is LOVE personified. And love is tough when it has to be, she is NO pushover. 🙂 Mary Jo is an incredible human being and an inspiration. She deserves every accolade she could ever receive and her humility is true.

    God bless Mary Jo Copeland. My life and the lives of my children are richly blessed for knowing her. We love her so !

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