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Adoption agencies all over the country have been inundated with people calling in to inquire about adopting Haitian orphans. As I’ve noted before, the complexities of Haiti’s orphan crisis are enormous, especially when we add the question of adoption to the mix. In light of these complexities, I think it’s safe to say that it will be quite some time before Haiti is even able to open its doors to adoption again. Even before Haiti’s earthquake, the adoption process was anywhere from 2-3 years, and a difficult one at that.

Given the current situation in Haiti, here is my question to those who are interested in adopting a child from Haiti: “How long are you willing to wait to give a Haitian orphan a home?” My concern is that our compassion for Haiti’s orphans, our desire to give them a home, won’t have the necessary patience (endurance) to see it through. What Haiti’s orphans need once adoption opens back up is Christians who have gospel-endurance.

When God predestined us to adoption, there was no such thing as a watch or a second hand. As a matter of fact, God hadn’t even created the world yet! Once God did create the world, though, his work of adoption didn’t actually break into human history until after he sent his Son. When it came to adopting us into his family, God was extremely patient.

The day will come when the adoption process will open back up in Haiti; and when it does, what Haiti’s orphans will need is Christians who imitate the patience of their Father in heaven. How many of us who are now interested in adopting a child from Haiti will still be interested when the adoption process finally opens back up? I don’t know.

What I do know, though, is that if our desire to adopt a child from Haiti is fueled by the gospel, there will be more of us who are willing to wait than there would be if it’s not. How do I know this? Because the gospel produces gospel-patience.

So, here’s my encouragement to everyone who is interested in adopting a child from Haiti. First, continue giving to organizations that are providing immediate relief to Haiti’s orphans. Food, water, safety, and protection are still Haiti’s orphans’ most pressing needs.

Second, keep feeding your compassion for Haiti’s orphans with the gospel. If we are to imitate the adoptive-patience of God, it will be because of the gospel.

  • Elora

    I’ve been thinking about this topic a lot today. It amazes me just how many people have considered adoption these past few weeks – the ones who NEVER considered adoption before – suddenly faced with these children and “needing to do something, anything” to help. It excites me. I only hope they tap into this desire and pursue other countries eligible for adoption.
    I struggled with this very concept even before the earthquake. I have felt the pull – even though I know I’m not within age eligibility/marital status (Russ and I have only been married five years) to even consider adopting from Haiti. But, I recognize the small ember being lit for a country I fell in love with ten years ago. So I wait. And pray.
    Thanks for posting this.

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  • Jena Penner

    I have been talking to lots of people over the last couple weeks about adoption in Haiti. These kids are so worth the wait! One thing I would like to suggest is to use this time to get things started…..
    get a homestudy,
    organize a couple fundraisers for the adoption,
    read The Connected Child by Karyn Purvis,
    study and
    prepare your hearts for this journey!

  • Dan

    Excellent suggestions, Jena!

  • tracie Loux

    Another thought…. while waiting on Haiti and praying, DO get a home study and get prepared (yeah for the comment on Karyn Purvis)…. but in the mean time adopt an child right here in the USA either through the Foster Care System or another great area of need, minority newborns. There is a great need for couples who are willing to adopt a child of any race here in the US.

  • Christie

    Haiti, like many others, has been heavily on my heart for the past few weeks. I have to admit that international adoption (before) seemed far-fetched and out of reach for our meeger, youth pastor (and wife) income. But, after much consideration, I’ve realized that God will provide!!! I already knew that, but it’s more “real” now. How exciting!

    My husband and I completed foster care training classes at our local DSS and have known for a while that God was leading us in the direction of foster care/adoption. We hope to continue in the foster care process as well as look into adoption through Bethany Christian Services.

    I firmly believe that Haiti will be on my heart for years to come. Before the earthquake, we didn’t qualify to adopt from Haiti (I am 23, he is 26 and we’ve been married for 3 years), but I firmly believe that, through this crisis, God has permanently “stamped” a heart for Haiti within me!

    God bless all of you whose hearts are heavy for the Haitian people. Don’t let it fade with the media. Be vigilant, compassionate, and prayerful!

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  • Kris Zoeller

    Anyone interested in adoption should attend the free LOCI Adoption Seminar on March 13 at Southeast Chrisitian Church in Louisville, KY. The seminar will address all all issues a pre-adoptive family needs to know. We will cover foster-to-adopt, international, domestic and embryo adoptions as well as a wealth of information on how to get started by adoption professionals and advocates. Spread the word!

  • Brian

    I saw in an interview on CNN a representative from the State Department say that the adoption process for those who have already applied prior to the earthquake had the process sped up for them once the crisis ensued.

    I’m not sure what it looks like for new applicants but their is a strong possibility that the quake, interest, international aid, and especially need, may all be a variables that bring about reform in the Haitian adoption process. That’s what I’ll be praying for…and applicants should look for.

  • Rebecca Maas

    While many people are ready and willing to take in Haiti’s earthquake orphans, for many families it will not be possible. We inquired about adoption from Haiti over a year ago but because of Haiti’s restrictive regulations we did not meet the requirements.

    There are many, many orphans all of the world who are available for adoption RIGHT NOW!! If this crisis has opened your eyes to adoption PLEASE take the time to investigate ALL counties open to international adoption. IF Haiti opens up with less restrictive regulations we will be FIRST in line to care for the orphans. BUT in the meantime we have adopted 5 beautiful children from other countries who desperately needed a forever family. God has blessed our family tremendously!!

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