Friends of Vida: Remembering Loved Ones with Memorial Gifts to Vida

All Vida programs and services are provided free of charge, which means we rely upon the generosity of others to help us advance our mission and serve men, women, and children in the greater Fox Valley. Friends of Vida embrace our ministry as their own through financial support of Vida in many ways, depending upon their giving goals, preferences, and desires. This includes the opportunity to designate memorial (or tribute) gifts to Vida to remember or honor a loved one. 

As part of the Friends of Vida donor testimonial series, Dcn. Rick Hocking shares why he and his late wife, Anne, embraced the mission of our life-serving ministry and designated Vida as a beneficiary of memorial gifts in remembrance of Anne. 

Donor Testimonial  |  Deacon Rick Hocking

Designated Vida as a beneficiary of memorial gifts given in memory of his late wife, Anne

As a Catholic Christian couple, one of the core tenets of our belief in, and obedience to, God is that all human life is sacred from the moment of conception to the last breath a person takes on this earthly pilgrimage. Foundational to this tenet is that life in the womb is sacred. At the spark of conception, God begins his mighty work in each of his children. It is our Christian duty to protect human life at all stages, especially the lives of the most vulnerable, babies in the womb of their mother.

A second core tenet is our responsibility to care for those who need the help of others. Jesus told the parable of the Good Samaritan to the scholar of the law who asked this question, “Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?”. In the parable, both the priest and Levite walked on the other side of the road to avoid the man who was beaten; it was the Good Samaritan who gave the man care. When mothers in crisis pregnancies are searching for answers, accompaniment, and love, it is critical to have people in place who can minister to that mother in a godly way.

As a result of these two tenets, we began our relationship with Vida, originally Mothers and Unborn Baby Care, many years ago. Supporting our fellow sisters in Christ who will soon be mothers (and often their significant others who may be traveling this uncertain road with the mother,) is an act of loving our neighbor. The Vida team has always provided loving and compassionate care to those who need to hear the soothing voice of reason during this emotional time.

There are various ways to support Vida and its efforts. While we have never volunteered at the center, we have actively supported their mission and work in other ways: sponsoring tables at banquets, attending special events like the Chip In For Life, and making monetary donations. In addition, Anne’s Catholic bookstore has provided raffle baskets and prizes as well as hole sponsorship for Chip In For Life. More important than these tangible means of support, Vida has been and continues to be in our daily prayers. We pray for a change of heart for all mothers facing unexpected and unplanned pregnancies, that they would always choose to protect the life that God has entrusted to them. 

Sadly, Anne lost her 5+ year battle with lymphoma cancer in April of 2023. There was no hesitation on our part as to where the donations to her Memorial Fund would be directed. Life is precious and it begins in the womb. There is no better investment we could make than the life-giving ministry of Vida.

(l to r) Dcn. Rick Hocking, Anne Hocking, Fr. Ryan Starks, Fr. Kyle Sladek at the 2022 Vida Chip In For Life

We are honored to have such faithful and devoted Friends of Vida, including Dcn. Rick and Anne, whose generosity has advanced our life-affirming mission and allowed us to serve women, men, and children in the greater Fox Valley for more than four decades. Honoring Anne through tribute gifts to Vida was a testament to her life-giving spirit and beautiful legacy. 

To learn more about honoring or remembering a loved one through a tribute gift(s) to Vida, or interested in learning about other giving options, please visit or contact Vida Development Supervisor Kristi Hoheisel at 920-731-4354.


Inclement Weather Notice:
April 3, 2024

Vida will be opening at 1 p.m. today pending further weather advisories.