As you prepare for Thanksgiving this week and then, on to Christmas shopping and decorating, let me toss one more item at you that will require some time, prayer and energy . . .
SUMMER HOSTING 2013!!!!!!!!!!!!
It's THAT time again! Christian Adoption Services has received the profiles of the beautiful children, aged 7-14, who will be coming to North/South Carolina this summer in hopes of finding their forever families.
I am looking at their pictures right now!
And . . . WOW . . . pure sweetness! There are 2 sibling groups of 2 and there's even a sibling group of 4! The group of 4 is made up of a big sister and her 3 little brothers. The youngest brother is just 7 years old. . . and they prepare to spend another Christmas among the fatherless. It makes no sense to me that children this healthy, cute and hopeful do not yet have parents. (They are 12, 9, 8 and 7).
Let me tell you a bit about the other children . . .
1. Jonalyn is a thin, cute 9-year-old girl. She loves to dance and play with her friends. She is suspected to have some ADHD. She is not being placed with any siblings. She is very tiny for her age. In this photo, she is wearing shoes that look to be too big and you can see her "spunk" in her eyes! Adorable!
2. John is 12. He is handsome and outgoing. John loves to play basketball and garden. He is very polite and friendly. A side note about John: he was hosted 2 winters ago by a family that very much wanted to adopt him but could not due to NO FAULT OF JOHN'S . . . the mother in this family is more than happy to communicate with any interested parents about John. She said so many wonderful things to me about John that I wished we would be here this summer so MY family could snatch him up. He has waited far too long. He's a good boy but I fear he's losing hope . . .
3.The brother/sister sibling duo are Jeffrey- 13 and Jean-9. And I know looks shouldn't matter in the adoption world (or any world) but reality is reality and these kids are BEAUTIFUL! They are very small for their ages and had a rough life living under a bridge being passed to various relatives before coming into care. They have suffered loss but still hold out hope that there is a family out there with room for them. They need to stay together and find their healing place in a loving, accepting family.
4. Daniel takes ballet, jazz and hip-hop classes at his orphanage. He is 12 years old quite handsome.
He loves to draw and is good at making friends. Daniel desperately needs Christian parents to guide him through his teen years and help him pursue the things that will help him to become a successful man. At 12, very few children are chosen. Even fewer boys. Won't you consider taking a leap of faith on a child who is destined to wait and age out simply because of his God-given gender?
5.Raydelle is 13 although he looks much younger. He loves attending church and is listed as athletic and coordinated. He has a smile that lights up the photo I am looking at right now. He is one of the many, MANY children I have read up on over the last few years who, on paper, might not catch your eye but if you could just SEE him . . . precious!
6. This next boy is a small, thin 14 year old named Sonny. To be honest, HE is the one we want the most for our own family . . .partially because he looks like "one of us" but even more, because he is a redemption story waiting to happen. But we are moving to The Philippines and he needs to be chosen long before we will be eligible to adopt again.
Sonny is the victim of physical abuse by his father and step father (not sexual abuse!) . . . his step father even cut off one of his fingers in anger! Sonny is described by his caregivers as a very helpful and compliant child who is also shy and withdrawn. Wouldn't YOU be ?? He is good with younger children and talented at playing guitar and drums. Sonny is one of the waiting children who has watched others be adopted and, I would guess, is beginning to wonder if his turn will come. And I don't mean to sound like broken record but . . . Sonny is extremely handsome. I notice that he is getting a longer write-up than the other children and so, I'd better stop now and keep it balanced but PLEASE, SOMEBODY COME FOR SONNY!!!!!!!
7. Next is the sibling group of 4 (Rosalinda, Ramil, Rammel and Ryan). They are cute and well-bonded to one another. As most Filipino children, they are tiny by US standards. They were voluntarily surrendered by their birth mother she could not care for them financially. But they know what it is to be loved and, no doubt, are missing terribly being in a family home. Not only would you be blessing four gorgeous kids through adoption but their mother as well. I have no doubt that this birthmother unselfishly placed these children in hopes of a great life for them. How humbling that YOU could be the answer to the prayers of a woman living in poverty on the other side of the world.
God's interwoven mercies blow me away!
8. Jerome is a 14 year old boy who was left in a box on the porch of an older couple as a baby. It took many years for him to be cleared for adoption because The Philippines does a thorough job of looking for responsible birth family prior to clearing children for adoption. Jerome likes to play drums in his church band and is considered polite and a good friend to the other children in his center. Jerome is dangerously close to aging out. He is one child I would probably just adopt and not spend time hosting if God led me to him, because he ages out at 16 thanks to US immigration law (and don't get me started on US immigration law . . . grrrrr).
9. Rico and Rex are adorable brothers who are 11 and 7. They look very much alike - doubly cute!
Rico loves to sing, dance, play with legos, cars and watch cartoons. Rex is an active little boy who likes to work outside in the yard and water the plants. These brothers are firmly bonded and get along with each other well. As I read their files, I was impressed with their test scores. These are bright boys who need a family to challenge them academically and foster that intellect that is there and ready to be cultivated. These boys are not noted to have any behavior challenges but have agreeable dispositions and are always up for something new. They are going to be wonderful sons.
And here is something to consider: you don't have to host. These children are available for immediate adoption. If you choose to adopt, you don't have to be living in NC or SC. You can contact Jim or Jenica at Christian Adoption Services (www.christianadopt.org) and get the ball rolling. You can get lots more information on any of these children and seek the Lord as to whether or not they are YOURS. Adoption is hard work. Adoption of older children can be especially challenging but anything worth doing is going to require you pour yourself out and let God use you!
In the adoption community, Filipino children are considered especially desirable and here are a few reasons for that (aside from their natural good looks - to which I am shamelessly partial).
A. Most orphanages in The Philippines have a low staff-to-child ratio and children are well supervised and cared for.
B. The Filipino culture places a high value on children and their orphans are generally loved by their caregivers and treated with the care (and discipline) any family would impart.
C. Adopting a waiting child in The Philippines takes about a year from application to travel - much shorter time frame than most adoptions (we did two of our adoptions in less than a year each).
D. Travel in and around Manila is not overly difficult. English is widely spoken and Western-style hotels and restaurants make the trip easier than many countries.
E. The Philippines is a Hague Convention country. You will NOT be bribed or asked for additional money in country. You will NOT travel only to find out your child is no longer available or much more disabled than his paperwork indicated. This is a transparent process, as much as possible.
F. The Filipino caregivers are brutally honest about the shortcomings of your child in his paperwork. Sometimes the write-ups seem a little negative or harsh but for good reason. The Inter Country Adoption Board does not want any potential adoptive parent to claim to have not been adequately informed of a child's needs and "issues". They want to avoid adoption disruption. The rate of disrupted adoptions from The Philippines is significantly lower than many countries.
If you have read this far in this lengthy post, I can't help but wonder if God is pulling your heart toward Philippine adoption and/or one of the children coming for Share Your Summer 2013.
Philippine adoption has changed my family for the better . We are so blessed to have entered the adoption world and we are extra lucky that we found The Philippines . . . or maybe The Philippines found us! Either way, we have fallen in love with the country, the culture and especially the orphans. I believe you will, too.
Seek His Face! Ask Him what you are to do with what you now know!
For HIS Fame,
proud Mama to six angels
two the "old fashioned way"
and four through the miracle of Philippine Adoption