A "Ripple"Rich Stigall
The church partners in the Adopt|KC movement are opening their doors to orphans right here in Kansas City. They are calling willing families to get trained and licensed. Some churches are renovating houses to provide a place for stable families to care for children that don’t have one. Some are partnering with businesses to create employment for older youth who don’t have families and struggle to find jobs.
At GO Project, we ask churches to start with the hardest thing first and dive into caring for the kids that nobody else wants. When a local church takes that dive it creates “ripples” within the church and throughout the community. These ripples are completely outside of the control of any government, organization, agency or even the church itself.
Last week we saw one of these ripples. One of our partner churches in KC has been calling families to dive into orphan care for several months. A member at this church responded and got trained and licensed, but felt called to help children who aren’t orphans but needed a temporary home. The church and its leadership embraced her in the process and built some supports around her. This woman now has 2 children in her home with the support and prayers of the congregation. She and the kids are doing great. The State’s plan for these kids is to reunify them with biological mom if/when she addresses the issues that caused the kids to be removed from her care.
2 weeks ago an older lady in the neighborhood of the church who has been trying to help her daughter recover from a downhill spiral in life was finally able to convince her to attend church. That morning, the daughter spotted her children in the audience… The children that the State had put into foster care a few months before. Their foster mom spotted her as well.
After the service, they all met in the lobby and the foster mom was able to get the attention of the pastor. They ended up meeting in the pastor’s office to explain the situation and get council. The pastor was able to help this young mother understand that her children were being cared for in a loving home and had the support and protection of the church. They were able to establish a plan to move forward in a way that would honor the State requirements, but also build relationships. They set a goal. Get the children home with mom and foster mom would step into a support role to help the family stay together.
Nobody was “rescued”. Nothing was “fixed”. The situation continues to be messy. Mom still has a long hard fight to prove herself to the State and get her kids back. But the leadership at a church in Kansas City asked their congregation to go after the kids that nobody wants. The ripples began. And now a whole family is being wrapped up into the life of the local church.
Only God could do that.