My son, Terrance, is now 27 years old. I missed the first three years of his life because he is adopted. When I considered adoption, there were numerous paths to pursue. There were private adoptions mediated by attorneys or agencies created for this purpose. Most of the children available through this avenue are infants. Because I babysat for nearly twenty years, I didn’t really want an infant.
At the time, friends of mine engaged in the process of foreign adoptions. They spent nearly $50,000 in 1992 to bring their first, and then second son home from S. Korea. I investigated this as an option but chose not to adopt a child from another country because I would struggle with maintaining the child’s native culture in my home and the city where I lived at the time.
After studying all the information available, I decided to go through the process for a domestic adoption. I went through the courses for becoming a certified foster parent, had a home study, and then began to look through databases that shared a picture and story for each child. And there were so many. Even though I limited the age range, I still saw the stories of thousands of children between the ages of 2 and 4.
I can only imagine that the need for foster and adoptive parents has only grown since the last century. There are far too many children who are unable to remain with their birth parents. Most of the children are unable to speak for themselves because they are too young, or they have no concept of what a healthy family environment is like. It is up to us to nurture all children in loving ways.
I am not asking everyone to foster or adopt a child. But is it possible for each faith community to assist with the adoption process? When we are able to gather together in person, can your church host an information meeting about foster care and adoption? Can you sponsor one or two families who are interested in becoming foster or adoptive parents? Can you create a support group for adoptive families as they begin the journey of what it means to have a forever home? Can we become the voice of the littlest persons in our world, to help them know they are loved and not forgotten? May we pray for the ways our Lord is asking us to care for one another each day. May we wear the mantle of God’s servants for the least in our world And Amen.