Saturday, October 31, 2009

Sweet Sleep Ministry Brings Beds to Orphans

Earlier this year the President of Sweet Sleep, Jen Gash, and colleague Stuart McAlister traveled to central east Africa, visiting orphanages where Sweet Sleep would soon begin working. As they traveled with friends at Samaritan’s Purse to identify orphanages in the most dire need of beds, they encountered an orphanage in Uganda named Caring Heart. The orphanage was run by a man named Paul who had grown up as an orphan.

As a child, Paul had no place to sleep except on the street or in sewage areas and other unthinkable places. One night, he reached utter exhaustion as he tried unsuccessfully to find a place to lay his head. He told God that if He would protect him and give him a place to sleep, he would devote the rest of his life to caring for children who shared his plight. God did.

Many years later, Paul--now a pastor--opened Caring Heart orphanage. Caring Heart provided food, shelter, education and much love. But it had only eight beds for the use of its hundreds of children. So when a new law in Uganda made it illegal for children in orphanages to sleep on the floor, the government felt obligated to close Caring Heart.

The children were forced to find places to spend each night—just like Paul had when he was a child. Their prayers were the same as his, “God, give me a safe place to sleep…” So, when Sweet Sleep’s first team of volunteers to to Africa arrived this summer with new bunk beds for the orphanage, there was a celebration like nothing they had ever seen. The President of Uganda sent an official to welcome them. And, because Sweet Sleep had provided beds for the children to sleep in, the government reopened the orphanage. The children’s prayers were answered.

Jen is currently serving as Tennessee State Coordinator for Orphan Sunday and has helped stimulate more than 20 events in her state, including the launch of a comprehensive Orphan Care Ministry at her home church, Brentwood Baptist, and “Burritos for Beds” – a fundraising campaign with Blue Coast Burrito restaurants in Middle Tennessee to provide beds and bedding to children in northern Uganda. For more information about Sweet Sleep, visit

Friday, October 30, 2009

Support newly adoptive families with the purchase of the Jockey Being Family Bear. This is a heart warming gift and will bring a smile to any child's face. For each bear sold, Jockey will donate $3 to the Debra Steingerwaldt Walter Foundation for Adoption to charities supporting adoption. Approximate size is 11"x5". For more information or to order your bear, visit and search for the word "adoption".

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Adoption Informational Meeting

Have you ever considered adoption?

In honor of National Adoption Month you are invited to attend an
Adoption Informational Meeting.

* Learn about the different types of adoptions, both domestic and international.
* Hear stories and ask questions from a panel of adoptive parents.
* Learn from adoption professionals from Evangelical Child & Family Agency.

Monday, November 16, 2009
7:00pm – 9:00pm
Bartlett Public Library
800 S. Bartlett Road
Bartlett, IL 60103

Refreshments will be served.

For more information or to let us know your coming, contact Dina at

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Steven Curtis Chapman - LIVE!

LIVE From Nashville! Brought to you by the Cry of the Orphan

Special Music: Steven Curtis Chapman, Geoff Moore, Children of the World Choir

Guest Speakers: Jim Daly (Focus on the Family), Dennis Rainey (FamilyLife), Jedd Medefind (Christian Alliance for Orphans), Sharen Ford (Colorado Division of Child Welfare Services).

On November 8th from 4:oo to 6:00 pm CST, join voices with Steven Curtis Chapman, Jim Daly, and Dennis Rainey to reach the nation with God’s call to care for orphans. Through excellent music and the sharing of the heart of God, we hope to give a megaphone to the cries of the millions of orphans around the world. Other guests include Geoff Moore and the Children of the World Choir.

The concert will be broadcast LIVE via webcast and satelite. Locations with high speed internet access will be able to view the concert remotely via the web. The broadcast will be a mixture of both musical performance and the sharing of the heart of God, and it will be appropriate for all audiences. For details on how to stream this event in your home or at your church, click here >

About the Cry of the Orphan:
The 2009 Cry of the Orphan Awareness Campaign marks the fourth annual unified campaign to heighten awareness of the plight of the millions of orphans around the world. The scope of this problem is too big for any one person or organization to solve. In the midst of this crisis, organizations from around the world are joining forces to make a difference.The Cry of the Orphan campaign is sponsored by Hope for Orphans (a ministry of FamilyLife), Show Hope, and Focus on the Family. Together, we desire to communicate that “YOU are God’s Plan for the Orphan” – each of us with our own role to play in caring for His children.

Friday, October 23, 2009

At the End of Slavery

Many of you have asked how you can fight trafficking and slavery around the globe from within your own community. IJM's powerful new documentary was designed to help you do just that — At the End of Slavery: The Battle for Justice in our Time* is a 31-minute film that takes viewers into the dark underworld of human trafficking and arms them with hope for a final end to slavery.
Help Us Grow the Movement — Just a Few Hours of Your Time
More than 27 million people are enslaved today, but if just 10% of Americans took action, we would have an advocate for every slave in the world. Bring new advocates to the fight by hosting your own "house party" screening of At the End of Slavery to introduce your community to the reality of modern-day slavery.

To date, hundreds of passionate IJM supporters like you are planning events that will reach more than 20,000 people in their homes, dorms, theatres and churches this fall. With your help, we can reach our goal of 50,000 people. Planning and hosting your event will take just a few hours, but the impact could last a lifetime.

Just 3 Simple Steps :
IJM has created a house party planning kit, which includes two copies of the film and takes you step-by-step through the process of planning a successful home screening.
1. Order your house party kit.
2. Plan and register your event.
3. Host your event!
Act Now!
Visit for more resources to plan your party and consider hosting your event during the Weekend to End Slavery (November 14, 2009) when IJM President and CEO Gary Haugen will host a 10 minute live webcast to kick off the evening events. A film alone will not end slavery. But by working together, we can.
Gratefully,Eileen CampbellDirector of Justice Campaigns

*At the End of Slavery: The Battle for Justice in our Time is a 31-minute documentary with narration by actor Danny Glover and music by Moby, Johnny Cash and Trentemøller. It features undercover footage from police rescue operations to free slaves, interviews with IJM clients and staff, as well as with leading experts and abolitionists including Kevin Bales, Mark Lagon, Samantha Power and Gary Haugen. Learn more about the film at

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Summer Angel

Cecilia & Abel Puczek are pleased to announce the birth of their 3rd child, Summer Angel.

Summer was born on September 24 at 8 am. She weighed 7 lbs and 11 oz and measured 20 ½ inches.
Cecilia has been faithfully leading and serving the Safe Families/Foster Care group at Willow Creek, So. Barrrington. Please join the "A Voice 4 His Children" family in celebrating the gift that God has given them. You can reach Cecilia at

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Adoption Informational Meeting

Have you ever considered adoption?

In honor of National Adoption Month you are invited to attend an
Adoption Informational Meeting.

* Learn about the different types of adoptions, both domestic and international.
* Hear stories and ask questions from a panel of adoptive parents.
* Learn from adoption professionals from Evangelical Child & Family Agency.

Monday, November 16, 2009
7:00pm – 9:00pm
Bartlett Public Library
800 S. Bartlett Road
Bartlett, IL 60103

Refreshments will be served.

For more information or to let us know your coming, contact Dina at

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Safe Families Craft Show & Raffle Fundraiser

Keep Them Safe
Holiday Craft Show & Raffle

Saturday, October 24, 2009
12:00pm - 4:00pm

Niko’s Pub and Grill
11900 Freeman Rd
Huntley, IL

There will be several crafters and vendors displaying their Holiday specialties. The show will be hosted in the banquet room at Niko’s Pub and Grill located across from the Huntley Prime Outlet Mall.

The show will be from 12pm - 4pm. There will be several custom gift baskets being raffled off. Bring a new winter coat for a child and receive 5 tickets for your donation. Tickets are $1 each.

Any questions, please call:
Teri Altpeter at 630-205-6013 or
Gary Minor at 847-421-9191

This event benefits the Safe Families for Children program.
Safe Families for Children is a ministry of LYDIA Home Association, a Chicago-based Christian social service organization founded in 1916. LYDIA launched Safe Families in 2002 with just a few volunteers, but the ministry has since grown to a network of 500 volunteer families serving as many as 300 families in need each year.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Chosen Ministry

First Christian Church in Champaign, IL has launched an orphan care and adoption ministry called Chosen. Their purpose and passion is to walk alongside God's people and seek to fulfill God's mandate to care for the orphan. They hope to create a community in First Christian and Champaign/Urbana of believers who are caring for the least of these. They want to be an encouragement and resource to those who are interested in adoption but they also have a heart for providing opportunities, both globally and locally, for orphan care. They know that not everyone is called to adopt and they want facilitate opportunities for everyone to have a part in caring for the orphan.

On November 6, Chosen will host a dinner at FCC with keynote speaker Tom Davis. Tom is a phenomenal speaker, president of Children's Hopechest, orphan advocate, author, and adoptive father. For more information or to order tickets to this event, please contact Kathy Garrison @, or 217-378-9639.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

T-Shirt Fundraiser for Chinese Orphans

The Adornetto family has adopted two children from China, and currently support several boys with special needs who live in an orphanage there. Kim is a graphic designer and designed the clothing you see below. You can be "a voice for His children" when you purchase any one of these items. A portion of the proceeds will help support these precious boys. To order, please go to and enter the site code "mei". This is a limited time fundraiser so you must order by December 4th. Items are due to arrive before Christmas. Thanks for supporting this worthy cause!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Resources from the 2009 Christian Alliance for Orphans Conference

The following is a list of resources that were purchased at the Christian Alliance for Orphans Conference in Dallas, TX. If you would like to view or listen to any of these key note addresses or breakout sessions, please e-mail Dina at

D.V.D. #1 Dennis Rainey (Family Life) & Rob Mitchell (author of “Castaway Kid”)

D.V.D. #2 Dr. Russell Moore (Southern Baptist Theological Seminary) &
Lightning Alhers (testimony: adoptee from Liberia)

D.V.D. #3 Elizabeth Styffe (Saddleback Church) and Mariela Clark (Vision Trust International)

D.V.D. #4 Dr. Tony Evans (Oak Cliff Bible Fellowship Church) &
Joscelynn Carbonell (testimony:foster child)

C.D. #4 Practical Ideas for Church Adoption/Foster Care Ministries (Michael & Amy Monroe, Irving Bible Church)

C.D. #9 A Theology of Adoption: Six Truths About Our Adoption from the Book of Romans (Daniel Bennet, Bethany Baptist Church)

C.D. # 11 Getting in the Way of Trouble: What Every Church Should Know When Intervening in the Lives of Foster Children & Families (Chris Padbury, Project 1:27)

C.D. # 15 Orphan Care, Adoption, and God’s Story of Redemption (Dan Cruver, Together 4 Adoption)

C.D. #18 Using the Heart Gallery as a Way to Raise Awareness & Mobilize People to Serve (Penny Cook, Irving Bible Church & The Faith Connection)

C.D. #22 How Foster Care Agencies Can Serve the Local Church (Suzanne Sims, Arrow Child & Family Ministries)

C.D. #28 Welcomed In: A Trinitarian Approach to Adoption (Greg Fields, Westminster Presbyterian Church)

C.D. #32 Mobilizing the Local Church to Serve Children in Foster Care (Tom Lukasik, 4KIDS of South FL)

C.D. #34 Engaging Youth & College Age for Orphan Ministry (Emily Richards, Shaohannah’s Hope, Brenda Niemyer, Campus Crusade & Paul Pennington, Hope For Orphans)

C.D. #38 Wait No More: Finding Families for Colorado’s Waiting Kids (Kelly Rosati, Focus on the Family & Dr. Sharen Ford, State of CO)

Book: “Adopted for Life: The Priority of Adoption for Christian Families & Churches” by Russell D. Moore

Book: “Thriving as an Adoptive Family: Real-Life Solutions to Common Challenges” by David & Renee Sanford

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Tough Ministry Conference

Tough Ministries Conference 09 is designed to encourage, support and equip churches of all sizes to intentionally and lovingly create ministries for the lost, least and looked-over members of today’s society.

Their Mission: To uphold the call to Christian care found in Psalm 82:

  • Defend the cause of the weak and fatherless;
  • Maintain the rights of the poor and oppressed.
  • Rescue the weak and needy;
  • Deliver them from the hand of the wicked.
Their Purpose:
  • Empower God’s people to practice Christ’s unfailing love for others.
  • Encourage churches’ involvement for maximum impact.
  • Equip pastors, ministry staff and volunteers with tools to build successful tough ministries in the following areas: Bulleted List
  • Foster care, adoption, and orphan ministries.
  • Special needs and disability ministries.
  • Compassion and caring ministries.

Tough Ministries Conference is a ministry of The Woodlands United Methodist Church. For more information or to register for the conference visit

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Positive Adoption Language

Part of the stigma associated with adoption comes from the language that people have traditionally used when speaking about it. The following lists examples of positive adoption language that you should use and negative language you should avoid.


Birth parent verses Real parent natural parent

Birth child verses Own child, real child, natural child

My child verses My adopted child

Born to unmarried parents verses Illegitimate

Make an adoption plan verses Give up, put up for adoption

Decide to parent her baby verses Keep her baby

International adoption verses Foreign adoption

Adoption triad verses Adoption triangle

Child in need of a family verses Unwanted child

Unplanned pregnancy verses Unwanted pregnancy

Could not conceive or could not carry pregnancy verses Could not have children, barren

Parent verses Real parent

Search verses Track down

(Taken from "Adoption For Dummies")