Amidst this tangled world, a good outcome can come in many different forms for an orphan: a warm bed in an orphan home funded by a global ministry; inter-country adoption; being sponsored by a far-off family by an international organization. Ultimately, however, I believe the very best future for all orphans looks like this: every orphan cared for by a local church in the home of a local family, by adoption whenever possible.
We now see glimpses of this future. It’s the way American believers are adopting waiting foster youth in states from Colorado to Florida. Internationally, Christians in Ukraine are among those leading the way, supported by U.S. organizations like the CoMission for Children at Risk and Lifesong for Orphans. Various kinds of local adoption movements are springing up elsewhere as well, from Uganda to China to South Africa. But it’s also apparent that cultural attitudes about adoption and biases against orphans don’t change easily, even in the church. (Lest Americans become frustrated, let us keep in mind how recently adoption was largely a whispered word in many of our own churches.)
Helping lead the way along the long but exciting road to a future in which all orphan care centers in local adoption is a new initiative called Seed Adoption. Its vision was first mapped out by an Ethiopian pastor I deeply respect, Aschalew Abebe. Alliance member organization Kidmia is playing the lead role in implementation, with Aschalew at the helm locally and joined in partnership by the Christian Alliance for Orphans and an array of excellent ministries.
What’s Seed Adoption’s mission? To inspire Ethiopian pastors with a vision for adoption from within the local church. You can explore the details f the vision and the opportunities to be involved on the Seed Adoption website. In my view, it carries the seeds of the future every orphan advocate should earnestly seek.