Better take a minute and think about that one.
I had to.

A break-out session at T4A, led by a staff member from Saddleback in CA, caused me to pose this very question to myself.

The speaker noted that institutionalizing children because they don't have parents is bad for them. It damages them mentally, emotionally, physically... She went on to observe that there aren't any orphanages here in US, and haven't been in 200 years. Why? Because orphanages are extremely inferior to families. That's why in the US we instituted the foster care system. Yes, there are types of group homes for children and teens, but it seems they are a last resort.

However, when we attempt to care for third-world orphans, group homes are our first resort-- not the last. It's not good enough for us, but good enough for them?? :again, thoughts from the speaker.

The title of the above break-out session was Wholistic Care for Orphans. Wholistic, meaning meeting more than just the physical needs (food, clothing, shelter) of orphans...but the emotional and spiritual needs as well. God designed the family unit to meet all the needs children have -- therefore orphans deserve to be in families, too!!

A family for every orphan?? A daunting task.
But, we must ask ourselves: what is God's best for the orphan?
And, are we settling for the world's best instead??


Tracy said...

Yes, yes--- they all deserve His best! Thank you for speaking for them!

Our next FG is 10/25-- I'll post details soon--- hope you can make it!

CousinKarat said...

Oh you do ALWAYS make me think. Wish we could chat more, or that we had chatted more or something. You know orphanages certainly dont' seem ideal but if its what other countries have to work with its what they have to work with. (Not that this excuses those in the U.S. who are called to adopt, from adopting,) but not everybody is called to adopt, not even everyone is called to parent. (It also doesn't excuse christians in the childs OWN country.) There are exceptions to every rule but isn't it better than leaving them to fend completly for themselves? It isn't the BEST situation. The BEST situation would happen if sin had never entered the world. For the most part I'd say that the answer to "Are orphanages godly?" is "shakey" YES. I say that with the idealistic notion that people who are running orphanages are mostly called to do so by God himself. But of course sadly there are probably also those who aren't in it for godly reasons. Seems to me some might be in in it for profit, or, heaven for-bid, worse. As far as the notion of no U.S. orphanages in 200 years, pretty sure thats not accurate. More later. I am long -winded and I'm pretty sure you din't mean to turn yer blog into a discussion board.
with Love
karen d

alisa said...

Great thoughts, Karen -- keep 'em coming!

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