Faith rewarded — Grandmother to meet grandson

LJUBLJANA, SLOVENIA

Eighty-eight-year-old Veronika Versic is anxiously awaiting the outcome of her miracle. In a few weeks, she will welcome into her life a grandson for whom she has searched for nearly 40 years.

It started with her faith to join the Church at the age of 81, and because two sister missionaries took time to serve a full-time mission in Slovenia.

Sister Versic now has a picture of her grandson, Marc Versic, who was born in and still resides in Australia, and his almost-8-year-old son, Andreas. Their reunion is scheduled in a few weeks. Hopefully, later this year, she will also get to meet her great-grandson.

Marc Versic's father, Mirko Fric Versic, was born to Sister Versic on Feb. 13, 1942, but left Slovenia for Australia as a young man. He married Marc's mother, Lorraine. Their son was born on Dec. 30, 1964.

Tragically, Mirko Versic died in a traffic accident on Nov. 8, 1966. Marc's mother married twice more, losing a second husband in an accident.

By the third marriage, she had several children, had moved and lost contact with her first mother-in-law, Sister Versic.

For Sister Versic, there remained only one question: would she ever get to meet her grandson, Marc? She did not know whether Lorraine got married again and whether her new husband adopted her grandson and had given him his family name, or if Marc kept his father's family name of Versic.

Years passed with no contact and no way to find her grandson.

The desire was not one sided, though. Marc Versic, who had not changed his surname, was also having a lifelong wish to find his grandmother, the only Slovenian relative he knew he had.

In August 2007, Marc visited Slovenia, searching across the country for his grandmother, even asking for her in the village where his father was born, but to no avail. His grandmother had moved, and no one knew where. He left Slovenia thinking he would probably never find her.

On Sept. 2, 2000, Veronika Versic became a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. She has faithfully attended the Frankfurt Germany Temple, a 12-hour bus ride, at least once a year since 2001. She fervently researched for her ancestors and attended the temple to perform their saving ordinances.

Out of baptismal waters came other blessings. She became healthier than ever — she could now walk without a cane. But her still unfulfilled prayer was that her grandson Marc would be found.

In 2007, she received her patriarchal blessing in German, a language barrier surmounted by her vague memory of German learned during World War II when all Slovenians were required to speak German.

During her visit to the Frankfurt temple in 2007, she was able to receive her patriarchal blessing by an Austrian patriarch.

In the blessing she was blessed to find her grandson.

In the meantime, Sister Karyl Lee Rodabough of Woods Cross, Utah, and her sister-in-law, Sister ReNae Ashton, began serving a mission in Slovenia in 2006. They helped establish a family history center in Ljubljana.

Through this work, they came to know Sister Versic and her search for her grandson. So, in September 2006, Sister Rodabough placed an inquiry on Web pages www.ancestry.com.au.

The miracle happened on Jan. 8, 2008. Sister Rodabough was home in Utah when Marc Versic of N.S.W. in Australia contacted her by e-mail. He said the description fit him.

Sister Rodabough immediately phoned him. They both ended weeping happy tears, telling each other of the search. This was a wish come true also for Marc, who thought he would probably never find his grandmother.

Grandmother and grandson have been in joyful contact and are awaiting the moment they will meet.

When people have faith, and do all they can themselves and leave the rest to the Lord, the Lord works His miracles. And this one is definitely a latter-day miracle.