The ABCNJ Public Mission Committee is pleased to report that our partnership with the New Jersey Department of Children and Families to find adoptive and foster homes for children is off to a good start. Many churches in our ABCNJ family have expressed interest in the project and during the month of March, two events inaugurated the effort. On March 25th, the Essex Association of American Baptist Churches hosted a workshop on adoption and foster care, featuring presentations from Family Recruiters Yolanda Alvarado and Dawn Smith from the Division of Child Protection and Permanency. At least three families came forward to pursue either foster care or adoption. Also during March, the First Baptist Church of Collingswood, working with Area Recruiter Juliet Henninger, hosted a babysitting event in which area Foster Parents were able to drop off their kids at the church while they enjoyed a night out. It was a great opportunity to provide support and love to both parents and children. Volunteers from both First Baptist Collingswood and Oaklyn Baptist were blessed by the experience.
One of the most exciting things about this project is the enthusiasm with which the State of New Jersey has received it. The Department of Children and Families is eager to work with the Church to find adoptive parents for the over 1400 waiting children in NJ (a waiting child is one who is presently and legally available for adoption), and to otherwise provide for children in foster care. Since we initiated our partnership, there has been a real openness on the part of the State to work with our churches. God is moving, not only in our churches but in our government. This is showing all the signs of being a God-sized project.
Efforts are underway to build a strong coalition of ABCNJ churches to help raise awareness about the status of waiting children and the need for adoptive and foster families. With your help, and with the power of God moving throughout our churches and state, we envision a day when there will be no more waiting children in NJ, only families waiting to take them home. If you would like to be part of what God is doing for children and families in our region, please complete the Public Mission Adoption Questionaire, or contact Brent Miller, Senior pastor at the First Baptist Church of Collingswood and Chair of the Public Mission Committee, by using the form below.
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