Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

4/27/2014 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (

Losing twins, who share heart and a liver, are not an option, parents say

Joined from the breastbone to the belly button, Andrew and Garette Stancombe are conjoined twins who share a heart and a liver. Their parents, from Indiana, Pennsylvania, declare them as "miracle babies" and say that they won't risk their children's health with separation surgery.

Calling her boys 'miracle babies,' the mother says that 'They'll continue to fight until it's their time. We will love them and cherish them until that moment and continue even after,' she told reporters.

Calling her boys "miracle babies," the mother says that "They'll continue to fight until it's their time. We will love them and cherish them until that moment and continue even after," she told reporters.


By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (

4/27/2014 (1 year ago)

Published in Marriage & Family

Keywords: Conjoinde twins, family, wishes

LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Born earlier this month, the two boys are already exploring each other, touching each other's faces. As they share organs, surgeons say that an operation to separate them would be risky. 

The boys' parents, Michelle Van Horn and Kody Stancombe have decided to keep their newborn conjoined twins together.

Check out our fine selection of Bibles -- by going here!

Calling her boys "miracle babies," Van Horn says that "They'll continue to fight until it's their time. We will love them and cherish them until that moment and continue even after," she told reporters.

Both mother and father are only 25 years old. They discovered about the unusual pregnancy at the end of Van Horn's first trimester. Doctors warned that it would be tough.

According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, conjoined twins occur once every 200,000 live births. They have a survival rate of between five and 25 percent. Many are stillborn, and others die a few hours after delivery.
"It was difficult hearing. I was scared and nervous," Van Horn says.

The boys entered the world on April 10, healthy-breathing, eating and sleeping just like any other newborn. They didn't need much hospital care and were given the okay to go home four days after birth.

Van Horn and Stancombe already have a 23-month old boy named Ryan Stancombe. These babies are a different kind of challenge.

The parents need to snap two different outfits together. Van Horn says giving the kids a bath and changing their diapers is a two-person task.

The trouble is worth it, Van Horn says. "[The best part is] being able to hold them and hear them cry and know they're here with me. Just seeing their eyes open and listening to them is just amazing to me," Van Horn says.

Doctors say that there's no guarantee that babies who share a heart will survive. Van Horn says she's living on "pins and needles."

"They could be with us here now, and in the next second be gone. A month down the road they could be gone. They could turn into teenagers," Van Horne said. "We don't know and that's the difficulty."

Another set of conjoined twins were released from their Dallas, Texas, hospital to a local inpatient rehabilitation center last week. Nine-month-old Owen and Emmett Ezel were joined at the abdomen at birth and shared a liver and intestines. They were separated during a surgery last August.


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'

Copywriter 2015 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for October 2015
That human trafficking, the modern form of slavery, may be eradicated.
Evangelization: That with a missionary spirit the Christian communities of Asia may announce the Gospel to those who are still awaiting it.


More Marriage & Family

Christian bakery continues to refuse to pay $135,000 fine to lesbian couple over a wedding cake Watch

Image of Melissa and Aaron Klein.

By Hannah Marfil (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Melissa and Aaron wanted to fight all the way for their religious views, including ignoring blatantly and intentionally the imposed fine for not baking the lesbian wedding cake. In response to the statement made by the spokesperson for the Oregon Bureau of Labor and ... continue reading

7 things husband secretly love about their wives Watch

Image of What men love about their wives!


Men can sometimes have trouble opening up about their feelings and thoughts. Most men want to tell their wives what they really, really love about them, but find the words hard to say. If your husband is not giving you words of affirmation but shows you his feelings in ... continue reading

Top 4 ways to serve God Watch

Image of Serving God.


We look at our fellow Christians doing missionary work abroad and wish we could impact people's lives as greatly. Well, God is everywhere and His children are all around us - we can serve without even leaving the country. The best service is rooted at home, in giving ... continue reading

Dear Sweet Mamas: A powerful and emotional open letter to the mothers of the Oregon shooting victims Watch

Image of


Several reports stated that the gunman who killed nine at the Umpqua Community College in Oregon specifically targeted Christians. Although the motive behind the shooting has yet to be verified, one victim's father relayed his daughter's story that they were asked ... continue reading

Pope Francis met privately with gay couple during U.S. visit Watch

Image of Yayo Grassi pictured with Pope Francis


Reports reveal Pope Francis' historic visit to the U.S. included a private meeting with a gay couple, prior to his meeting with Kentucky clerk Kim Davis and her husband. WASHINGTON D.C. (Catholic Online) - Another unexpected event has been revealed from the pope's ... continue reading

'The Luckiest Man on Earth': 36-year-old father dying with 40 tumors finds happiness in faith and God Watch

Image of Image from The Paul Moore Foundation.


Paul Moore was diagnosed with kidney cancer and 40 tumors were found in his body, with some in his skull, yet the 36-year-old husband and father of two believes he is one of the luckiest men on Earth. His faith in God made him realize he has no time to waste on ... continue reading

Planned Parenthood under fire as House Oversight and Government Reform Committee hearings continue Watch

Image of


During the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee hearing on Tuesday, Planned Parenthood president Cecile Richards said that she has never heard of any incidents in her organization where a child has survived a botched abortion attempt. LOS ANGELES, CA ... continue reading

Victim of severe burns tracks down loving nurse 38-years later Watch

Image of Nurse Susan Berger holds infant Amanda Scarpinati (WTEN-TV).


Amanda Scarpinati always turned to an old photograph of the unnamed nurse holding and comforting her after a surgery she underwent as an infant. To Scarpinati, the woman was a good and sincere "friend" through difficult times in her life, particularly when she was ... continue reading

Parents discover heartbreaking note from their 6-year-old son following his death Watch

Image of Leland Shoemake (Facebook).


Following the sudden death of 6-year-old Leland Shoemake, his parents returned home to discover the heartfelt note their son left behind for them. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Leland Shoemake was only 6-years-old when he contracted a rare brain infection caused ... continue reading

Kansas police officer gives bike to homeless man after hearing man's inspirational story Watch

Image of


Roeland Park Police Department makes headlines again with more heartwarming news. An officer was called to check on a suspicious man in Sweeney Park on September 22. However, instead of finding a man worthy of arrest, he found one with an inspirational story. LOS ... continue reading

All Marriage & Family News


Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Jonah 3:1-10
1 The word of Yahweh was addressed to Jonah a second ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 130:1-2, 3-4, 7-8
1 [Song of Ascents] From the depths I call to you, ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 10:38-42
38 In the course of their journey he came to a ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for October 6th, 2015 Image

St. Bruno
October 6: Bruno was born in Cologne of the prominent Hartenfaust family. ... Read More