"FROM ORPHANS TO HEIRS: Reflecting our Adoption in Christ in Theology and Practice"
"So you are no longer a slave, but God’s child; and since you are his child, God has made you also an heir." -Galatians 4:7 (NIV)
Join us as we discuss our adoption in Christ and how it serves as a guide to supporting the adoption community in the modern day.
We are focusing on two themes: Our adoption in Christ, and then, how that’s fleshed out in the real world.
We will have presentations on:
1. The biblical concepts of adoption and family.
2. And presentations on the praxis of adoption today, such as multi/trans-racial adoption, adoption of adult children, growing up in a home that practices adoption, working with the foster system, adoption of an entire family, kinship adoption and so on.
Here is a summary and overview of the presentations for the event:
Rev. Michael Ayayo and Dr. Karelynne Ayayo
Next Steps: Discerning the Path Toward Adoption (or Walking Alongside Those Who Do)
Are we called to parent by adoption? Why should we adopt? What path should we take toward adoption? Bringing together the head, heart, and hands, Michael and Karelynne Ayayo offer theologically-informed practical wisdom for potential adoptive parents as they navigate their journey and for the many pastors and counselors who guide and support them along the way.
Our Faith; God’s Faithfulness: One Family’s Story of Adoption
Sometimes life seems wrong, and it feels like God is unfair. The struggle between what we know of the Christian walk from Scripture and what we go through in our day-to-day lives can challenge our faith to the breaking point. Michael and Karelynne Ayayo share what they experienced travelling the road from infertility to parenthood via adoption and how God’s truth spoken through the prophet Habakkuk provided lessons to help make sense of the journey.
Dr. Randy Richards
Kinship in the Biblical World
Most people in the world belong to collectivist societies, as opposed to our American individualist society. They think in terms of “we” rather than “me.” Interestingly, the biblical world was also collectivist. In such societies, three key cultural values are kinship and family, patronage, and brokerage. Ironically, the very things they treasure are often disparaged in individualist societies, as nepotism, patronage, and “the middleman.” Why does this matter? Key cultural values, aka, the most important things are often “what goes without being said.” For that reason, there are often kinship and family themes running through biblical stories in ways we individualists never saw. We’ll look at how understanding kinship as a collective value will help us read the Bible better.
Vince and Michele Diller
Foster to Adopt: How God Uses the “State” to Build a Family
After 15 years of marriage the presenters decided to open their home to foster children and ended up adopting 4 sibling boys. The presenters will share an overview of the foster care process starting with the initial Resource Parent (aka Foster Parent) training to eventually navigating the court system to adopt the boys and become a family of six. The focus of this story is how God used a receptive couple’s heart to change six hearts and continues to grow them all in grace for His glory.
Dr. Nathan and Kristi Lane
Back to Babel: The Biblical Call and Practical Challenges of Transracial Adoption
This presentation will look at the biblical backgrounds of race and culture, and the Gospel’s reconciliation of these differences in Christ. Special attention will be given to the place of the Day of Pentecost in Acts as a dramatic undoing of the ‘scattering’ of Babel. The presentation will end with pragmatic issues and concerns related to transracial domestic adoptions in the United States.
Walking in the Father's Steps: Adoption as a Picture of Christ's Love
Growing up in a home that chose to foster and adopt children wasn’t always easy. It requires sacrifice from everyone in the family, but the joy and fullness far surpasses the cost. I have found that in the midst of adoption the redemptive story of Christ’s love comes alive. Ours was the most costly adoption in history, yet he chose to endure the cross for the joy that was set before him. The process of adoption informs our theology of sonship and, likewise, God’s overwhelming love and grace can teach us much about the way we ought to be treating the modern day orphan.
Dr. Paul Copan
Adoption in the New Testament and Today: Scripture and Practice
The apostle Paul’s rich use of the term “adoption” as an image of salvation highlights a beautiful—and even jarring—picture of divine grace. Through the status of adoption, we enter into the life of the divine family (the Trinity) – a status we have received through Jesus Christ the “firstborn,” such that we become co-heirs with Christ. This presentation will weave together the cultural, biblical and theological aspects of adoption, ending with discussion of the personal relevance of adoption within our own family.
Mobilizing Your Congregation for Adoption and Orphan Care Ministry
Do you ever wish your church had a way to minister to orphans, but you’re not sure how to start? The New Testament says caring for orphans is “true and undefiled religion.” This session will help you create a clear vision, strategy and practical action steps to mobilize church members and successfully launch an orphan care ministry. Learn how to disciple your people by increasing awareness, deepening compassion and engaging them in outreach to orphans and vulnerable children. If your church has already begun an orphan ministry, this session will help elevate the ministry you are doing. You can have a global impact through serving the fatherless.
The Adoption Option….Helping the Hurting
A look at the crisis pregnancy center movement in America and how it relates to women and men in unplanned pregnancies and creates a culture of life through the adoption option. From perceptions, misconceptions and the grounding of adoption in scripture, we are connecting the dots to understand role of pregnancy centers.
Beautifully Broken: The Heart of a Birthmom
From the desperation of being pregnant with a baby that she could not keep…to the restoration through the life-giving choice of adoption, presenter Jenna Meketa will share her experience of becoming a birthmom, God’s redemption and blessings through brokenness, and how the lessons she learned can contribute to the faith community.
Don't miss this educational, enlightening, and encouraging event! Register today! Cost is only $15!
Sponsored by Lifeline Children's Services
Download all of the speaker summaries below: