If you did not know, Orphan Sunday was a couple weeks ago. November is National Adoption Month and Orphans Sunday is part of that every year. As the Christian Alliance for Orphans describes it:
"Orphan Sunday is your opportunity to rouse church, community and friends to God’s call to care for the orphan."
Our church (we have finally found a church!) held Orphan Sunday today because it didn't work out with their schedule to do an event on the actual Orphan Sunday. It was beautiful and I was so blessed by it. Our church is starting an orphan care ministry, which I am so excited about, and I wanted to share a few of the ways they are getting involved. I think churches struggle to figure out how to respond to God's command "to look after orphans" (James 1.27) and I loved the simple but beautiful ideas brought up today.
1. We are providing free babysitting for teen moms and single moms one evening in December so they can get Christmas shopping done or whatever else they need to do. I am realizing more that orphan care also extends to caring for parents who are having a hard time. We have to help the families that need it so we in fact PREVENT orphans as well. Parenting is hard, especially for single parents and teenagers so let's provide the support they need to be the best parents they can be.
2. Adoption Fund. I am so excited about this because it would have helped us immensely in our international adoption if our church had had something like this. Most people I talk to who want to adopt, are too afraid of the financial burden, so they don't do it. International adoptions are upwards of $30,000, ya'll, so people need help. Our church is setting up an adoption fund and at any time, people can write that in the memo of their checks and their money will go into it. Then, we can help families who are adopting.
We are doing a couple other things and the ministry is in the beginning stages, but I loved these two ideas and am very excited to see a church taking such tangible steps to care for orphans. Does your church have an orphan care ministry and what are some of the things they do? I love to hear about that stuff!