Monthly Archives: January 2013

Why you should consider the Philippines

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Before we adopted, my friend Nikki did a post like this that was very helpful for us. We have been asked many questions about this process, so I thought I would go ahead and write a blog post about it. If you are considering adoption here are some reasons why the Philippines is a GREAT program.

1) THE COST
While all adoptions require a great deal of sacrifice on the adoptive parents part, the Filipino program is relatively inexpensive compared with many other domestic and international programs – up to $10,000 LESS depending on your agency.

2) IN COUNTRY STAY
For us a huge factor was the in country requirements. With four small children, we didn’t want to be separated from them for extreme amounts of time. The requirement for the Philippines is 3-5 days in country. There is only one trip required, and that is the trip to pick up your child!

3) INCOME STANDARDS
This is one which many families enter with knees shaking. Good news! THERE IS NO MINIMUM INCOME REQUIREMENT in order to adopt through the Philippines. The only U.S. requirement is that you meet these guidelines – http://www.uscis.gov/portal/site/uscis/menuitem.5af9bb95919f35e66f614176543f6d1a/?vgnextoid=73c63591ec04d010VgnVCM10000048f3d6a1RCRD

4) LOTS OF INFO
The Philippines is extremely thorough with the information that they give you regarding your child. They want your adoption to be successful as much as you want your adoption to be successful. They don’t want you to bring your child home and discover some huge issue that was hidden from you. They are extremely upfront about all information.

5) TIMELINE
The timeline in adopting a waiting child from the Philippines, is relatively fast. This does not apply if you are on the waiting list for a baby. If, however, you are willing to consider a child that may have some special needs (some extremely minor in nature) then, you can expect from the time you turn in your application to the time you bring your son or daughter home to wait about 8-12 mos.

6) SKYPE
This was a HUGE deal for us! If you are adopting a child that is a little bit older, they will usually grant your request to skype with your child once you have been officially matched. The times and how often are left up to the child caring agency and what is convenient for them. We have found that skype has been the best gift. It has taken away the nervousness of being strangers and has given us a chance to begin to get to know our son. I can’t even begin to describe what a gift this has been!

7) CAS
Here is my shameless plug for my amazing agency. Christian Adoption Services has been INCREDIBLE to work with. I have heard nightmares about other agencies, and I can confidently say we have nothing but glowing things to say about our agency. Jim and Jenica run the Philippines program, and they are both absolutely wonderful to work with. They really did everything for me that they possibly could have, and answered my one million questions. If you are looking to adopt, this is the agency to go with!

8) HAGUE
This is by far, one of the most important reasons you should consider the Philippines. Being a Hague country is a huge catalyst for preventing child trafficking. Many, many well-meaning couples decide to adopt, but they have a list of requirements of what type of child they are willing to consider. Unfortunately, this has opened the doors to trafficking. Children that aren’t really orphans are adopted on a regular basis. I strongly encourage you to research this issue before jumping into the international waters, and should you decide to go with a non-Hague country, please do your research and choose and agency that is completely above-board.
In a Hague country, the children have papers describing exactly why they were orphaned. If they, like my son, were abandoned, then you can rest assured that for at least a YEAR or MORE the child caring agency searched and searched through multiple means to find the child’s family and get anyone to come forward to care for them. If the child was surrendered, then there is a fingerprint or signature of the parent that made the decision. The records are very thorough and there is not mistaking, these children are truly orphaned. The Hague requirements protect against so much.

Thinking about international adoption? You should consider the Philippines!

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Would it be you?

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Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.
James 1:27

What I called discernment, was my way of making my judgemental heart appropriately spiritual. I’ve spent my life in church. I learned to dress up on Sundays, how to behave appropriately, and to tithe of my allowance at an impressively young age. I could quote Scripture and sing any song in the hymn book.

We make rules on our spirituality and make ourselves feel proud to have obstained from so much. We say that we do not, but we look down on those that have stained themselves by giving in to temptation and loosing their purity. Oh, how we must grieve the heart of God!

My life has changed in this adoption journey. So many people say things like ‘oh, how wonderful of you to adopt a little boy’, but what they don’t know, is how wonderful this single act has changed me.

Friends, we have bought into the ‘american dream’. We who have grown up in church. We who can quote passages of Scripture. We who can sing any hymn in the hymn book. We who tithe and give of our offereings. We have missed what HE has said is true religion. We believe to be good parents we must provide lavishly for our children. We believe we must take them on lavish vacations and spend large amount of money on them on their birthdays. When we compare this to His Word, what is truth? God says HE will provide for our children. He says a LOT about the love of money, and in every passage, He condemns it. Why would we want to teach our children that money is so very important?

We believe that we should only have a few children because more than a couple would be more than we can handle. We have begun to think of children as burdens, and not the blessings that He has proclaimed them to be! God has a great deal to say about children, and all of it speaks of how wonderful they are! While I’m not suggesting we all jump on the Duggar train, I think we should throw out our preconcieved ideas of limiting our family size. I think we should compare our thoughts in the light of His truth, and we may find ourselves wanting.

I read a book this year that changed my life. The entire concept of the book was based on the suggestion that if we took scissors and physically cut every passage in the Bible out that talks of taking care of the orphan and poor, our Bible would be so full of holes, it could barely stay together. I read it in shock. I realized that we the church, the bride of Christ have glossed over this hugely important piece of the heart of God.

As we have started the bartimaeus project and begun our adoption, I have read their stories and wept countless tears. Mothers, some children themselves, have given birth. Teenage girls that have been abused by people that should have loved and protected them most and now they are mothers themselves. Young women looking for love in the wrong places, and another baby is born. Parents in nightmarish circumstances that loose their lives and leave a child or many children behind. Who will care for them? Oh, Friend, can I suggest, that God intended it to be YOU and I? He clearly does not desire them to be fatherless. Who will rise up? Who would ask the hard questions of themselves and find that perhaps you could handle another blessing in your life? Would it be you?