According to the Stepfamily Association of America, 1 out of 3 Americans is a stepparent, stepchild, or other member of a stepfamily.

With approximately 1300 new stepfamilies being formed every day in the U.S. and the prediction that by 2010 there will be more stepfamilies in the U.S. than any other type of family, the need for positive support systems for stepfamilies has become a critical issue.

In addition to struggling with the adjustments of stepfamilies and the complications that accompany them there is also the challenge of a new marriage. With 60% of all remarriages ending in divorce, it is clear that further resources and support systems are needed.

Scott and Mary Ross of Washington grapple with the same issues that millions of stepfamilies struggle with – making blended families work in a way that all children feel equally loved and secure.

The Ross Family will be recognizing their son, Christian, on National Stepfamily Day with a Family Medallion. This will be the second time that they have used the medallion. “We want to use the medallion again because CJ has one and we want to show our two boys that blood doesn’t matter, they are brothers. We’re a family and that is what is important!”

They first used the medallion to include Mary’s son, C.J., in their wedding ceremony. It was very important to them that C.J., be involved in the ceremony. Although C.J. was young, they could tell through his behavior that he was jealous of Scott’s arrival in Mary’s life. The Family Medallion ceremony provided a simple and emotionally satisfying answer to the couple's dilemma: a family-oriented wedding service that gives children a meaningful role in the wedding nuptials.

Today, there are many more resources available to give stepfamilies support and guidance. The Family Medallion is one such resource in that it acknowledges the importance of children and provides positive support for new families created when a parent marries. The Family Medallion has three interlocking circles, a symbol that represents family love in much the same way that the wedding ring signifies the love shared by a husband and wife. More than 15,000 families a year use the Family Medallion ceremony to help cement the bond between parents, stepparents and children.

Although Christian is still too young to appreciate his medallion, C.J. is very proud of his necklace that came from” Mama’s Scott.” As their two sons grow up, Mary and Scott look forward to describing the occasions in which each of their sons received their Family Medallion.

In honor and recognition of Stepfamily Day Clergy Services, Inc. is offering a 10% discount on all Family Medallion Resources ordered between August 26 and September 16, 2002. A portion of each sale goes to support the Stepfamily Association of America, Inc. This organization provides resources to help create successful stepfamilies. For more information on the Stepfamily Association, call 1(800) 735-0329 or visit their web site,

For more information, contact Reverend Coleman at (816) 753-3886 or Clergy Services, Inc. at (800) 237-1922. Information is also available via the web site,

Author's Bio: