The word “adoption” conjures up different images for different people, and for good reason. Adoptive parents have several paths to choose from, including independent adoption, private adoption, and foster care adoption. And along those various paths are even more choices, such as fostadopt, open adoption, semi-open adoption, and closed adoption, as well as various types of agencies that help birth parents and adoptive parents move the process to completion.
Independent adoptions are done privately and directly between the birth parent and adoptive family, or with the assistance of an adoption center or attorney; there is no legal intermediary. If you need more assistance as well as someone to serve as a go-between between you and the birth parent, adopting through a private agency will be best. Private agencies will work hard to find an appropriate match for all parties involved. Foster care adoption also provides an intermediary (a county social worker), but involves more uncertainty, as most birth parents will be actively pursuing reunification with their child or children.
Despite their differences, what’s true of all these paths is that they have the same final destination in mind: a successful adoption match. Given that, how can adoptive parents determine which is best for them?
When choosing a path, it’s important to spend time researching options and asking questions. Just as important as the questions you ask of the agencies are the questions you ask yourself about what is important to you. What do you want most from the people with whom you will partner in building a new family? Is it a quick turnaround? The lowest cost? The least amount of paperwork? Given the importance of this decision, it is likely to be none of those things, but rather something deeper.
Christian Adoption Agencies
Religious beliefs imbue all aspects of one’s life, and that should be no less true when acting intentionally to build a thriving family. When it becomes clear after months or even years of prayer that you are being called to adopt a little one into your home, it is important to keep your faith in mind when searching for a compatible agency.
Of utmost importance is whether or not an agency will help you prayerfully down the path of adoption. Christian adoption agencies are not just faith based, but are Christ-centered. From those handling the initial application to those making final placement arrangements, it is comforting to adoptive parents to know the people with whom they are working share their core values and speak a common language of belief.
Similarly, birth parents of faith often seek out Christian adoption agencies in hope that their child will be placed into a forever home with parents of that same faith. When older children are adopted, both birth and adoptive parents benefit from knowing that a foundation of belief has been laid and that faith traditions begun early in a child’s life will continue. Providing this match and assurance is but one of the many ways Christian adoption agencies can offer support to all parties involved.
The adoption process is an emotional one, but there is great comfort in knowing that the adoption agency you choose to partner with is more than just a business, but is instead a prayerfully built ministry, called into being to assist both adoptive and birth parents.
Founder of Lifetime Adoption, adoptive mom, adoption expert, and Certified Open Adoption Practitioner (C.O.A.P).
Since 1986, adoption expert Mardie Caldwell has been dedicated to bringing couples and birth parents together in order to fulfill their dreams.
“Many years ago, I was also searching for a child to adopt. We didn’t know where or how to get started. Through research, determination, and a prayer, our dream of a family became reality. I started with a plan, a notebook, assistance from a caring adoption consultant and a lot of hard work; this was my family I was building. We had a few heartaches along the way, but the pain of not having children was worse!
Within weeks we had three different birth mothers choose us. We were overwhelmed and delighted. Many unsettling events would take place before our adoption would be finalized, many months later. Little did I know that God was training and aligning me for the adoption work I now do today. It is my goal to share with our families the methods and plans which succeed and do not succeed. I believe adoption should be affordable and can be a wonderful “pregnancy” for the adoptive couple.
I have also been on both sides of infertility with the loss of seven pregnancies and then conceiving by new technology, giving birth to a healthy daughter. I have experienced first-hand the emotional pain of infertility and believe my experience allows me to serve your needs better.
It is my hope that for you, the prospective parents, your desire for a child will be fulfilled soon.”