Do You Know You Have Family in Africa?
I’ve always felt that Christians understand adoption better than anyone else because we know what it’s like to be adopted. When we accept Jesus into our hearts, we are given “the right to become children of God” (John 1:12 NIV). Maybe that’s why in earlier times Christians referred to each other as “Brother Bill” or “Sister Jane.” What we sometimes forget is that our “adoptive family” reaches every corner of the earth, and one of the more exciting places where we have family is in Africa.
For example, when we first introduced the concept of foster care in Ethiopia, we were told by local officials that it would never work because Africans would not take in a child who was not a relative. But we were confident because we work with the Church, and the churches we worked with in Ethiopia didn’t let us down. Our Foster-to-Adopt program was so successful that other African nations such as Ghana and Uganda invited us into their countries with open arms.
Aren’t you proud of your brothers and sisters?
Thanks to local churches in the African countries where we serve, children’s lives are improving. The HIV/AIDS epidemic has resulted in literally millions of orphans, and poverty has made it extremely difficult for many families to care for their children. In addition to finding Christian families to welcome these children into their homes, your generous financial support enables us to provide family preservation services aimed at keeping families together by meeting their basic needs and providing job skills training. Most parents in this program become self-sufficient within three years. As these families learn about Jesus Christ and accept Him into their hearts, they become a new addition to your family!
Recently we partnered a local church in Michigan, offering our expertise and experience to expand this church’s global outreach efforts in South Africa. Together with South African churches, we are helping to implement a Safe Families for ChildrenTM model in South Africa. What I love about this ministry is that Christian families basically come alongside vulnerable kids and their families and help them in the name of Jesus. Not only are we influencing at-risk families with the gospel, but we are showing government officials how the redemptive power of our faith lifts people out of their misery. All of this from a local church in the U.S. who wanted to do more for their “family.”
Written By Bill Blacquiere