There are many well run Christian orphanages in the world.  One in particular, Casa de Fe in Shell, Ecuador, is close to my heart.  We have supported their work and receive their newsletter, ‘Fingerprints of Faith’.  Patti Sue Arnold is the founder and director.  She started caring for outcast children a few years back, and now the orphanage is home to more than 50 unwanted Ecuadorian children of various ages.  Many have minor birth defects, the reason they were unwanted.  If you have extra funds or time,  contribute in any way you can to this ministry.  Then, consider adopting one of it’s children, or helping another family to do so.   lacasadefe.org

Orphanages are not forever families.  Orphanages, even the best, are simply substitute institutional care for kids who do not have a mom and dad to love and provide for them.  Orphanages should be a transitional safe place, like foster care should be, until permanent placement with a family is arranged.  Sadly, many orphans age out of these institutions because the Christian church is not doing its job of adoption.  The Christian church is seemingly content to support orphanages, but does not want to advance to the next stage of orphancare:  placing these children with Christian families.

Why should placement in a Christian home be top priority for orphans, versus the children remaining in a well-run orphanage?  Well,  Christian families are God’s plan for growing His Kingdom.   An institution can never provide what God had in mind for the family, His families.  Dad, happily married in loving life-long covenant to Mom, produce offspring through procreation, or adoption.  Within this marriage, Dad shepherds, disciples, provides for, and protects the family.  Mom is helpmeet to Dad, nurturing and teaching the children.  Through the ups and downs of family life,  parents and children forge lifelong bonds that help transition the children out of the home to marry, produce, and parent the next generation. The cycle is repeated.  If one parent is missing, half of the work and bonding doesn’t get done.  If both parents are missing, nothing gets done.  What happens to the subsequent generations?

We Christian families have an opportunity to change the life of orphans, one or more at a time.  We simply need to begin by helping each other adopt the orphans of our nation and the world.  Whether from an orphanage, or foster care, orphans need a forever father and mother to show them the way to the next successful generation.  And to God be the glory.

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