Caring for families in Distress

Those Who Helped Us

It’s a great blessing and privilege to raise our boys. A number of people helped bring our family together.


We highly recommend our adoption agency. The great effort that CHSFS puts into preserving each child’s story and honoring their first families sets them apart from other agencies. This is an immense blessing for our boys.


Show Hope
Show Hope covered a significant portion of the cost of our adoption through their grants for adopting families. Show Hope also works hard to raise the church’s awareness of the need for and of the factors surrounding adoption and seeks to involve people in creative ways.


Lifesong for Orphans
Lifesong for Orphans also helped with a substantial portion of our adoption expenses through the grants and loans they provide for adoptive families. Lifesong also works in Ethiopia to implement projects that provide care for orphans.


Grace Adoptions
Ed and Sharon Appler have been an excellent, helpful resource for our family as our social workers. Grace Adoptions completed our home study and first two post-placement reports.


Adoption Attorney
Kaye McLeod helped us navigate through the mountain of bureaucracy required to attain all the necessary documents after we came home with the boys. We greatly appreciate Kaye!


Additional Help
Here are some creative ways to help families in other parts of the world that our family supports.


Xtra Mile Ministries
Xtra Mile Ministries creates a supportive community for orphans of the Rwandan genocide (who are now young adults) and provides opportunities for these young men and women to pursue education. Contact Charles Kabeza to scholarship


CHSFS Child Welfare Projects
Our adoption agency also designs and implements programs in Ethiopia to protect and assist families so that the urgent need for adoption might one day disappear.

Adoption and Families Around the World

Our Story

On a cold Friday in January we sat down to have the, “It’s time to start a family” talk. We both wanted to raise children. We both were interested in adoption. By the end of the weekend we had decided to begin our family by finding children who needed parents. We spent the next four months completing the necessary paperwork followed by eighteen months of waiting to travel to Ethiopia and bring home our boys. God used this period of waiting to open our eyes to the myriad of issues surrounding international adoption. During this time we grappled with the real and urgent need not just for adoptive families but also for earnest efforts to make the need for adoption disappear. This process has forever changed our lives and shaped the way our family – all four of us – will engage the world around us.


Pure Religion


Children in a rural village in Angola. According to UNICEF’s 2008 report, Angola has the second highest mortality rate for children under five years old (second only to Afghanistan). Twenty-two percent of Angolan children die before reaching their fifth birthday. For comparison, Ethiopia has the 27th highest “under five mortality rate” at 11%.

Our Convictions

We are proud and honored to parent Efesson and Biruk. But while Efesson and Biruk bring us great joy, the circumstances under which they came into our family cause us great sorrow. Adoption is necessary, in large part, due to the extreme poverty that shapes much of the world.

Adoption is like bandaging a trauma victim; the bandages help heal the scrapes and bruises but they cannot fix the most serious problems. Tens of thousands of children lose their parents every year due to poor nutrition, HIV/AIDS, or a lack of access to health care. Millions of families lose their children for the same reasons – all factors directly linked to poverty. Adoption is a necessary means to find families for children who have lost their family, but adoption addresses a symptom – not the problem itself. Adoption resolves an immediate need for one child, but it cannot prevent other families from suffering the same trauma.

We believe the best way to help families is to find creative solutions that prevent the consequences of poverty from tearing families apart. Adoption is an essential way to find families for those children who have been orphaned by poverty, but we believe God calls us first to do all that we can to prevent this kind of trauma. These convictions will impact greatly our family’s ministry in Angola and guide us as we look for other ministries in which to get involved.