About Orphan Sunday
On Orphan Sunday, Christians stand for children who’ve lost the protection and care of family. We are a people called to defend the fatherless…to protect the vulnerable…to visit orphans in their distress.
Each event is locally-led. Sermons and small groups, concerts and prayer gatherings, shared meals and youth activities—each stirring believers with God call to care for the orphan, and what ordinary people can do in response.
From many sources, one voice. Each November, these thousands of local events resounding across America and around the globe, all sharing a single goal: that God’s great love for the orphan will find echo in our lives as well. Orphan Sunday is your opportunity to rouse church, community and friends to remember and reflect God’s deeply love for every orphan…and for each of us as well!
Many churches and organizations have hosted an “Orphan Sunday” over the years. But for the first time in 2009, the Christian Alliance for Orphans united organizations and churches across the globe in a shared vision for Orphan Sunday. We would rise together for orphans — not merely to benefit one group or mission, but to see God’s people worldwide rise as His first answer for children who lack the protection and care family.
The seeds of this united Orphan Sunday come especially as a gift from the church in Africa. While attending a church service in Zambia, an American visitor was struck by the pastor’s passionate call to care for orphans in the local community, which had been ravaged by AIDS and poverty. Members of the church faced deep need themselves. But as the service ended, one after another stepped forward with money, food and other goods-some even taking off their own shoes and placing them in the offering for orphans. An elderly widow brought her last cabbage to the offering basket, giving all that she had for orphans. (Luke 21:1-4)
The visitor, Gary Schneider, was so impacted that he began to help Zambian leaders coordinate Orphan Sunday efforts across Zambia. These efforts spread to the U.S. in 2003 with help from Every Orphan’s Hope. The Christian Alliance for Orphans honors the church in Zambia for the gift of Orphan Sunday. We pray the church all over the world may be as faithful as our Zambian brothers and sisters to reflect God’s heart for the orphan, both near and far.
To view the history of Orphan Sunday, we invite you to watch “Zambia’s Gift to World” (32 minutes.)
Have a question about Orphan Sunday?
Orphan Sunday Voices
“Orphan Sunday… what an amazing opportunity for Christ’s Bride to show her love for her Savior.”
– DOUG SAUDER, President, 4KIDS of South Florida
“We believe God is moving in the hearts of His church around the country in big ways, waking up His people to the joy and call to care for the fatherless. Orphan Sunday is the perfect opportunity for local churches to join in this movement. We are encouraging everyone to take part if possible.”
– DWAIN GULLION, Past President, ABBA Fund
“Having an Orphan Sunday is a great way for the Church to be focused one Sunday a year on an issue close to God’s heart. As we gather together in worship we recognize that Christ has not left us as spiritual orphans (John 14:18) and we can corporately remember those among us who are orphaned and in need of a family.”
– BRIAN LUWIS, CEO, America World Adoption
“Of all the people God could have chosen for us to take care of, He chose the widows and the orphans. Antioch Bible Church as well as all other churches should take this charge seriously. That is why I am so excited about Orphan Sunday and its emphasis on one of God’s priorities for us.”
– DR. KENNETH L. HUTCHERSON, Adoptions, Antioch Bible Church
“God created this magnificent world, and it produces enough resources to fill every human need. Yet deep need remains, especially for the 15 million children who’ve lost both parents. The Church needs an Orphan Sunday: to challenge, inspire and equip us to fulfill our Biblical mandate to care for orphans.”
– WILLIAM J. BLACQUIERE, President & CEO, Bethany Christian Services
“If you’re like me, you were a youngster the first time someone said, ‘Children should be seen, not heard.’ Children, regardless of where they live, need voice; they need to be heard. With your church participating in Orphan Sunday, then getting involved in serving the needs of orphans and at-risk children around the world, you can be a voice for these hurting children.”
– DR. KEN HALL, President & CEO, Buckner International
“Orphan Sunday is a great opportunity to connect the hearts of students with the heart of God and help meet the needs of orphans throughout the world.”
– MARK GAUTHIER, National Director, U.S. Campus Ministries, Campus Crusade for Christ
“We grateful to The Christian Alliance for Orphans and their dedication to uniting the Body of Christ in promoting the cause of the orphan. We are excited that November 8 has been proclaimed as Orphan Sunday and we are honored to be a part of The Christian Alliance for Orphans. We look forward to all that will be accomplished on Orphan Sunday!”
LISA HOLBROOK, Executive Director, Caroline’s Promise
“I am excited that Orphan Sunday will help bright the plight of the world’s 145 million orphans to the attention of the body of Christ. Just as Christianity provides life eternal, so is the church commissioned to improve the quality of human life through orphan care and adoption.”
– JIM WOODWARD, Director, Christian Adoption Services, Inc.
“Focus on the Family is honored to be a part of Orphan Sunday, calling believers to care for orphans in need. As someone who was orphaned as a child, I’m thrilled to see the church working together on this cause that is so close to the heart of God.”
– JIM DALY, President & CEO, Focus on the Family
“People everywhere need to know that adoption into God’s eternal family is the ultimate expression of His love. Christian families who adopt are missionaries who bring God’s love to orphan children by living example. Orphan Sunday remind us that while not all are called to adopt, anyone can love and minister to orphan children in a practical and meaningful way by helping families in their own church and community who already want to adopt.”
– GERALD CLARK, Co-Founder & Executive Director, Home for Good Foundation
“Orphan Sunday is an opportunity for believers all across America to speak for those unspoken for; those the world has forgotten. There are millions of orphans in the world. It is clear in Scripture that Jesus loved and cared for these children – how can we do any less?”
– VICKI MULLINS, Director of Orphan Ministry, East-West Ministries International
“Orphan Sunday, as led by Christian Alliance for Orphans, provides for a powerful opportunity for local churches in America to demonstrate their commitment to pure and undefiled religion.”
– PAUL PENNINGTON, Executive Director, Hope for Orphans
“God, the Father of all fatherless, adopts us into His family and gives us a place to belong, an inheritance and an identity. Orphan Sunday declares that every orphan from all corners of the world needs a family to belong to, an inheritance and an identity.”
– DEEANNAMARIE WALLACE, Founder, Hope Inc.
“What a catalytic event to unite the heart of the church to advocate on one particular day.”
– GARY RINGGER, President, Lifesong for Orphans
“Orphan Sunday engages God’s people to put our FAITH into ACTION…as we unite to advocate for the most vulnerable.”
– ANDY LEHMAN, Vice President, Lifesong for Orphans
“We’ve learned that no single person, no single organization, no single effort will care for the needs of the 143,000,000 orphans worldwide. Orphan Sunday helps to bring the message of the orphan to the eyes, ears, hands and feet of God’s huge family.”
– ED SCHWARTZ, President, Loving Shepherd Ministries
“I am profoundly appreciative of the tireless efforts of Christian Alliance for Orphans helping all of us to connect with practical means and methods to save the most vulnerable orphans in the world, and thereby, know God’s pleasure.”
– KIMBERLY L. SMITH, President, Make Way Partners
“It is in our nature as Christians to identify with Christ’s burdens taking up His cross daily. Christ love for orphans is reflected in the Old and New Testament alike and should be reflected in the heart of His church. Orphan Sunday reflects our obligation and mandate to live out the life of Christ and define the nature of pure and undefiled religion.”
– MICHAEL DOURIS, President, Orphan Outreach
“If we want to be God’s hands and feet extended outside of the four walls of the church, it is critical to reach those on the inside of the four walls and make the unaware, aware. Orphan’s Sunday will be historic, not from the stand point of cultural prestige, but more importantly it will be a day where Orphan’s lives will be set free as people become aware of their calling in this area of Kingdom work.”
– SCOTT HASENBALG, Past Executive Director, Show Hope
“Orphan Sunday isn’t about charity; it’s about the mission of Christ. I pray that every Gospel-transformed congregation will observe Orphan Sunday, calling all Christians to our mandate to image Christ by caring for his little brothers and sisters, the fatherless of the world.”
– DR. RUSSELL D. MOORE, President, Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission
“Orphan Sunday is a powerful tool for the church to educate and equip believers to live out the Bible’s command to care for the orphaned. I believe Christians want to care for the fatherless, they just haven’t had a way to recognize they exist or to know how to respond until now.”
– JEN GASH, Founder, Sweet Sleep
“Orphan Sunday is an exciting nation-wide opportunity for the church to build their faith through finding creative ways to care for the orphan. James 2:17 reminds of a super-important Biblical principle: ‘Unless faith produces good deeds, it is dead and useless.’ TAKE Orphan Sunday seriously and TURN your faith into action.”
– MATT STORER, President, Child Development International
“On behalf of the entire staff of World Orphans, I would like to thank the Christian Alliance for Orphans for your work in raising awareness and advocating for orphans worldwide on Orphan Sunday each year. I am convinced that as the plight of the orphan is better known, both the church and individuals will understand the real and present problems facing orphans and will seek to become part of the solution. We at World Orphans believe that God created children to be connected to a family and we seek to engage the Church, both here and abroad, to reach the least of these–orphans and vulnerable children–until they all have homes.”
– SCOTT VAIR, President, World Orphans
“Getting involved in “Orphan Sunday” is getting involved in one of most priceless and rewarding acts of kindness – for ALL eternity you will never be sorry for one minute you spent or one penny you invested in helping God care for the ones He is the Father to – the fatherless…invest today!”
– CAROL HART, Founder, Zoe Children’s Homes