Thursday, May 19, 2011

Questions OR Excuses

I am feeling quite the cynical lawyer this morning.
I woke up to read posts on an email list from 2 awesome women working hard to earn and raise money to rescue their children with special needs from orphanages in Eastern Europe.
One family was interviewed in their local newspaper, and after publication of the positive article, was hit by comments online questioning why they are not helping children here in the US and that they should not have "signed up" for this adoption if they did not have the money needed.
The other family was turned down for a donation by the Board at their Church (where the husband serves in a leadership position) because the Church did not want to "set a precedent for giving to international adoptions,"
This past Sunday, while we were selling bracelets at our Church (with the full support and even promotion by our dear pastor Fr. Greg), a man did come up to me and sincerely ask why we would do this when there were children in need here in the US.
My response was:
God calls us all to do His work in different ways. If you feel called to help children here, I am behind you 100%!!
But orphans here in the US have foster parents. They go to school. They have government-paid medical care. Poor children here are fed breakfast and lunch in their public schools.
Orphans where we are adopting from (and in countries like Ethiopia), ESPECIALLY children with special needs, NEVER go to school, rarely get the level of medical care they need, and are often malnourished, tied to metal cribs, and will spend the rest of their life in institutions!!!
Then I told the story about how after their mother died, my friend P's oldest adopted boy from Ethiopia was left to care for his 3 yo and 1 yo sisters ALL DAY while their dad went to town to try to make money....
this little 5 year old boy would carry the baby on his hip all day going to cows and goats he could find to squirt milk in her mouth so she would not STARVE!!!!
THAT is why we do what we do....
if God is calling you to do something different to help the least of his children, AWESOME!
I'll send you a check right now....
but frankly, for MOST people, MOST of the time, this "question" is just an excuse so they can crawl back into their snug little worlds of denial and go have another $5 Starbucks and moan about how tough life is and they deserve it...
Cynical attorney signing off.
Positive and polite wife and mommy back on line!


  1. We are ONE body no?
    That is our response as well - being poor in America is VERY different than being poor elsewhere. We are so abundantly blessed and to whom much is given, much is expected. Some folks just need to see a little more of the world I suspect...

  2. I haven't adopted, but I get asked the same question. Why do I sponsor children outside the United States? Why do I go on mission trips outside the US? I give the same answers you do, but I am going to now add that if they wish to do it, I will support them 100%. I do tell them that God never told me to stop loving when I got to the border. BTW- I volunteer through CASA, being a voice for children in foster care. Most of the people criticizing for what we do aren't doing anything.

    I love the name Henry. :-)

  3. I've always thought these questions were odd. A child deserves the love and care of a family regardless of where the child was born! A child born in the US at least has the opportunities available that no other country in the world can provide. We should be working together to ensure that no child is an orphan. I agree that it is a convenient way for people to take no action. Thanks for this post.