With orphanages being closed, Grace Center is receiving more and more children in the full-time residential care facility, known to many as the children's home or temporary care center.
Six of our children came from one corrupt orphanage when it was closed. All of these children have different stories of how they actually came to be declared "abandoned". One of these stories amazes me every time I think about it.
Ten-month-old Yohannes was said to have been abandoned until our reunifications officer, Melese found out differently. Melese's job with Grace Center is to search for the true stories of how and why our children might have been abandoned. Melese is always finding amazing, breathtaking solutions for these children that could only be the work of God. Of course, this was the case with Yohannes. Yohannes came from the local hospital and after Melese spoke with them many times they told him that Yohannes did, in fact, have family.
When Melese found the family, they were shocked that Melese was even asking about Yohannes. Yohannes' parents brought him to the hospital when he was just a month old. Yohannes was very sick. The medical personnel took Yohannes into another room. Someone returned shortly after saying, "I am sorry, but your child is dead."
Someone returned shortly after saying, "I am sorry, but your child is dead."
Because death of infants is so common in Ethiopia, there usually aren't any burials or proper mourning when a baby dies. Yohannes' parents left the hospital heart broken that they had lost their precious baby boy. The person in the hospital who told this lie was being paid by the corrupt orphanage that would in turn receive hefty sums of money to do an international adoption.
When Yohannes' family heard that their son was not dead but alive, they came to Grace Center immediately to receive their little boy. Yohannes now lives happily with his mother, father and five siblings. He even has a twin sister who looks exactly like him!
He even has a twin sister
who looks exactly like him!
Yohannes with his mother, father and twin sister.
Imagine if Grace Center did not exist this child and his parents would never know the truth. Once again God works amazing miracles through those who are willing to do His work. This includes you who have been a part of this life-saving work.
We have seen more than 70 reunifications since Grace Center began in 2007. We are also seeing many Ethiopian families adopting our children. We have now placed or are in the process of placing ten children with adoptive families. This is very new for Ethiopia and a huge answer to prayer as some of the children who had no surviving family seemed to have no opportunity to ever have a family. Through Grace Center, God is creating an amazing culture of adoption within Ethiopia.
We struggled financially throughout the last year but thanks to you, God has continued the good work through Grace Center.
Last Christmas we were able to receive the much needed $50,000 in donations. Due to the growth of Grace Center, we are in great need of $64,500 for our year-end appeal to continue carrying on the work God has set before us.
Still, Grace Center continues as the only project of its kind in Ethiopia!
Whenever Christmas comes around, I cannot help but think of these precious babies and children, and think about how Jesus came into the world as a little baby. I pray for you this Christmas that the Lord will bless you and keep you and fill you with joy in the birth of His Son.