Saturday, September 4, 2010

Only CERTAIN Families Need Apply

When blogging about the Georgia case where a trial judge denied an adoption by a woman "living in sin," I was struck by this notion -- many who are avidly pro-adoption, who decry the 132 million orphans without families, who equate orphan care with adoption, only want two heterosexual married parent families to adopt. Not surprisingly, as a single mother, I find this annoying and hypocritical.  I especially love that one of these orphan care organizations calls itself the Fatherless Foundation.  How nice that my children could receive grants from them -- but only to find a new family with a mom and a dad.

This blog post at Her.meneutics, the women's blog of Christianity Today, addresses this issue:
When I was considering adopting my daughter, one of the most disheartening things was the active discouragement of many Christians who told me point-blank that only married couples should adopt. It was bad enough, I thought, to be consigned to a life of singleness because of the lack of unmarried men in church. For people to say singles are unworthy to adopt a child who would otherwise be living in an orphanage boggled my mind.

* * *

I also e-mailed another member of Highview, Russell Moore, senior vice president at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, dean of its school of theology, and author most recently of Adopted for Life. I asked him about his stance on single adoptions, and he wouldn’t say what that might be. He just said the answer was in his new book, which he said he'd be glad to send to me. It arrived, and over the weekend, and I found one sentence addressing my concern: “Generally speaking, if you are single, pray for a marriage before you seek children.”

Well, of course. But what if God does not answer someone's prayers for marriage?

* * *

Christian groups report that there are 132 million orphans in this world. If so, every available resource needs to be freed up to care for these children — meaning singles as well as couples. There are 100 million single persons over 18 in the United States alone — one-third of the population. I think it’s safe to estimate that at least a third of all adults in a typical U.S. church are single. Why is it verboten to mobilize the unmarried so they too can nourish and bring up children?

I’m not picking just on the Southern Baptists. Several years ago, I was interviewing a professor at a Catholic college who also told me singles should not adopt. In fact, he said, children would be better off staying at orphanages than being adopted by a single mom or dad. I was speechless. I have seen the conditions of orphanages in Iraq, Kazakhstan, and India. What sane person would want a child to grow up in one of those? When I see Christian adoption activists ignore singles, I conclude, sadly, that despite their rhetoric, they are not fully committed to doing what it takes to make sure every child gets a home.
Amen, sister! Testify!


Chinazhoumom said...

OMG - people are sooo stupid - the comment they would be better in an orphanage than with a single person - well lets review - so what happens to all those married people's children when they get divorced - does someone swoop in - and say BAD PARENT - you single person you...
Don't get me on my soapbox!!

LisaLew said...

I have found single Moms ( I was once one, BTW ) to be VERY attentive to their children, and incredibly grateful to be a parent. Many have waited a LONG TIME to have their family, and have put a huge amount of their lives into doing so.

Sylvia said...

We are a married couple. We were just rejected by Thailand because we are not medically infertile.
Seems like there are ever more regulations each day to rule out certain families. I struggle to understand how this fits with the stats regarding the many children with out families.