Nashville couple adopts little girl with severe disabilities: ‘We are the luckiest parents’

Nashville couple adopts little girl with severe disabilities: ‘We are the luckiest parents’

A Nashville couple is sharing the story of how they came to adopt their daughter, who has severe disabilities. Folk and country singer-songwriter Sean McConnell has written for superstars like Tim McGraw, Martina McBride, Rascal Flatts, Brad Paisley, and others. He’s been nominated for a Grammy award for his song “Daughters,” which was performed by Little Big Town. But one of his greatest accomplishments is being a father.

In a profile by the Tennessean, McConnell and his wife, Mary Susan, shared the story of how they adopted their daughter internationally. They had decided to adopt from Ghana, a country in western Africa, but struggled over the notion of accepting a child with disabilities.

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Simone Biles, former foster child, becomes first woman to land a Yurchenko double pike vault

Simone Biles, former foster child, becomes first woman to land a Yurchenko double pike vault

Simone Biles, World Champion and Olympic gold medal gymnast, made history on May 22, 2021, when she became the first woman in history to land a Yurchenko double pike vault. The 24-year-old American gymnast competed at the U.S. Classic in Indianapolis on Saturday, landing the difficult move and walking away with the all-around title. Saturday also marked Biles’ first competition since October of 2019.

The Yurchenko double pike has a 6.6 difficulty score and required Biles to sprint down a runway, perform a roundoff onto a takeoff board, execute a back handspring with a half-twist onto a vault, double somersault off the vault, and land in a piked position.

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AMAZING: Woman has fostered 81 newborns over past three decades

AMAZING: Woman has fostered 81 newborns over past three decades

Linda Owens, a 78-year-old retired human resources manager from Hayward, California, has served as a foster mother to 81 infants over the last 34 years. “What I do comes from my heart for every fragile infant who needs a good start in life,” Owens said, according to a report by the Washington Post.

Her first foster baby came to her in 1987 from Alameda County Department of Children and Family Services in Northern California. Since then, she has taken in several newborns each year. Often, the infants have been exposed to drugs in their mothers’ wombs, so they remain with Owens under court orders until a judge determines they can be reunited with their parents or they are adopted.

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‘Meant to be’: Family fosters then adopts two girls with disabilities

‘Meant to be’: Family fosters then adopts two girls with disabilities

Juan and Judith Arguello always wanted five children. After having two biological children of their own, Mariano and Judith, the couple decided to work with the organization Toward Maximum Independence (TMI), which places children with disabilities with foster and forever families. Now the couple has adopted two daughters with developmental disabilities through that program, and hope to soon adopt a son.

In 2016, the couple began their foster care journey and took in Akilah, now 10. They fell in love with her right away, and were able to adopt her. Then, in 2018, they fostered Lily, age 14. Her adoption was finalized in 2020.

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Son with Down syndrome inspires parents to adopt three daughters with the condition

Son with Down syndrome inspires parents to adopt three daughters with the condition

For the McGarritys, adopting children with Down syndrome has felt like a calling, and a profound joy — so much so that they are parents of eight, including four children with Down syndrome.

Jeff and Sonia McGarrity met in Washington, D.C., in 2001. After the birth of their first two sons, Thomas and Sean, the couple had no indication during pregnancy that their third son would be any different. But after the midwife delivered their third child, Jeffrey, they learned that he had Down syndrome.

Many parents react to such news with shock, fear, or trepidation, but the couple took the news in stride.

Read More “Son with Down syndrome inspires parents to adopt three daughters with the condition”
Woman abandoned as newborn ‘grateful’ her birth mother didn’t abort her

Woman abandoned as newborn ‘grateful’ her birth mother didn’t abort her

A woman abandoned on someone’s doorstep nearly 30 years ago is seeking answers from her mother.

Aniya Smith, who now lives in California, was found at the Riviera Parkway Apartments in Jacksonville, Florida, on January 11, 1992. It was cold and rainy when she was discovered at 5:30 in the morning by the woman living there. Police were called, and she was given the name Baby Jane Doe.

“It’s like an empty feeling that you feel,” Smith told First Coast News. “You just don’t know who you are.”

Now at age 29 and with two children of her own, Smith is trying to find out who her biological mother is and get answers.

Read More “Woman abandoned as newborn ‘grateful’ her birth mother didn’t abort her”
Viral TikTok shows how Safe Haven Baby Boxes save lives

Viral TikTok shows how Safe Haven Baby Boxes save lives

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A video showing how Safe Haven Baby Boxes work posted on TikTok has racked up nearly 20 million views. Monica Kelsey, who founded the non-profit, is a firefighter and paramedic who was abandoned as an infant. Through the Safe Haven Baby Boxes TikTok account, Kelsey has been sharing videos to spread awareness of not only the baby boxes themselves, but how they work as well.

Using a doll, Kelsey walked viewers through the process from beginning to end. A mother would approach the baby box, which is typically located at a safe location, like a fire department or hospital. “When a parent walks up to one of our Safe Haven Baby Boxes all they have to do is open the door, place their child inside, take the orange bag, shut the door and walk away,” she explained.

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Baby Noah spent 15 years frozen as an embryo before he was adopted

Baby Noah spent 15 years frozen as an embryo before he was adopted

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A couple in Florida has welcomed a baby boy in February whom they adopted as an embryo. Baby Noah had been frozen as an embryo for 15 years and was donated to an embryo adoption agency. He was then adopted by Amanda and Jeremy Lewand.

The couple had struggled with fertility issues and decided to adopt an embryo after four years of attempting to conceive. They are hoping to inspire other couples who are dealing with similar fertility struggles.

“It was all worth it,” said Amanda. “After going through infertility, we had longed for a child so bad.”

Unbeknownst to the couple, Noah had been waiting for them for 15 years.

Read More “Baby Noah spent 15 years frozen as an embryo before he was adopted”
Adoption is an Alternative to the Hopelessness of Abortion

Adoption is an Alternative to the Hopelessness of Abortion

My co-worker surprised me one day by asking, “Did you see what’s on your cup?”

I turned the red paper cup around and looked at the wording imprinted on it. It stated, “Face it. Without adoption, Wendy’s wouldn’t be here.”

I knew it to be true. The founder of Wendy’s, the late Dave Thomas, had been adopted as a child. As an adult, after building a successful nationwide restaurant chain, he became a tireless advocate for adoption.

Think about it. Consider the jobs that would have been lost, the relationships that never would have formed. The people who would not have had Dave Thomas to look up to as a mentor and a business leader, were it not for adoption.

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INSPIRING: Couple adopts 7 siblings after parents die in car accident

INSPIRING: Couple adopts 7 siblings after parents die in car accident

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Pam and Gary Willis were already parents to five children and grandparents to six when they chose to step in and help a group of seven siblings who needed them.

In 2019, Pam read a story about seven children who were in need of a new, permanent home. They had been in foster care for more than a year after losing both of their parents in a car accident, according to FaithPot. The children were separated in different foster homes during that time and Pam felt the calling to do something to help.

“I can’t explain it — I just knew I was supposed to be their mom,” she said.

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Virginia House Advances Bill Repealing Protections for Faith-Based Adoption Agencies

Virginia House Advances Bill Repealing Protections for Faith-Based Adoption Agencies

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Unsplash.
Children walk down a pebbled path.

The Virginia Catholic Conference expressed alarm at the bill’s passage, warning that removing the conscience protections could threaten the work of the state’s Catholic adoption and foster care agencies by allowing the state to deny them licenses, grants, or contracts.

This article was originally published in The Daily Register. Click here to read the Original Article

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Powerful Super Bowl ad features Paralympic swimmer’s adoption story

Powerful Super Bowl ad features Paralympic swimmer’s adoption story

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For many people, the draw of the Super Bowl isn’t the game itself, but the commercials. Each year, companies pay millions of dollars to have their ads featured during the big game, in the hope of getting attention from the hundreds of millions of people watching. This year, there was one ad in particular that has gotten people talking: the story of Paralympic champion Jessica Long.

Toyota, which sponsors the Paralympic Games, titled the ad “Upstream.” Interspersed between shots of Long swimming through images of her life was audio from an adoption specialist who calls with what she frames as bad news for Long’s mother.

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My Father Showed Me What it Truly Means to be Pro-Life, He Adopted Me

My Father Showed Me What it Truly Means to be Pro-Life, He Adopted Me

Last Friday, January 22, was the most painful day of my life. I lost the most incredible man I ever knew: my Dad. I tried to articulate some of my thoughts on social media:

Today is the most painful day of my life, yet like my Dad always said: “Rejoice in the Lord, always, and again I say rejoice.” So, I rejoice that this morning at 6:23am, Heaven gained a beautiful soul who loved Jesus and people (especially his family) with his whole heart. Henry Bomberger was a man who embodied what it means to be a man of God. Today, a man who exemplified what it means to be pro-life—a father who adopted and loved thirteen children (in addition to three biological children)—met the Father to the fatherless.

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Parents of four adopted children and one biological child welcome quadruplets

Parents of four adopted children and one biological child welcome quadruplets

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In just over three years, Maxine and Jake Young have gone from having no children to having nine. After suffering two miscarriages and facing a polycystic ovarian syndrome diagnosis, the couple decided to pursue adoption through foster care. From there everything changed — quickly.

“We didn’t plan to have this large of a family,” Maxine told PEOPLE (the TV Show!). “But it just seems like these babies are meant to be.”

Maxine said she had always wanted to foster and adopt, and she and Jake discussed the idea even before they got married and suffered miscarriages. In July of 2017, the couple welcomed three siblings from foster care into their home and family.

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Couple Goes From 0 to 9 Kids in Three Years After Fostering Siblings, Giving Birth to Quadruplets

Couple Goes From 0 to 9 Kids in Three Years After Fostering Siblings, Giving Birth to Quadruplets

Maxine and Jake Young thought they may never have children.

After Maxine was diagnosed with polycystic ovarian syndrome and miscarried two babies, the Pennsylvania couple decided to become foster parents and pursue adoption, The Epoch Times reports.

That was in 2017.

Today, the Youngs are parents to nine children: four adopted and five biological including quadruplets who were born in July. Though the Youngs’ lives are chaotic, they said they feel very blessed by all their children.

“We didn’t plan to have this large of a family,” Maxine told People magazine recently. “But it just seems like these babies are meant to be.”

Read More “Couple Goes From 0 to 9 Kids in Three Years After Fostering Siblings, Giving Birth to Quadruplets”
Lansing Diocese Adopts Gender Identity Policy Consistent with Biological Sex

Lansing Diocese Adopts Gender Identity Policy Consistent with Biological Sex

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Logo for the Diocese of Lansing.

The diocese encourages counseling for those distressed or confused by their sexual identity, and it expects that its counselors “hold a correct Christian anthropology of the human person and understand and adhere to Catholic teaching.”

This article was originally published in The Daily Register. Click here to read the Original Article

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How pro-lifers can change negative cultural stigmas surrounding adoption

How pro-lifers can change negative cultural stigmas surrounding adoption

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(Save The StorksWhen it comes to unplanned pregnancy, the most common choices for U.S. women are abortion or parenting.    

But there is a third option, one that is often left out of the conversation when discussing reproductive rights – adoption. In fact, less than 4 percent of unplanned pregnancies result in adoption. 

The bottom line?  According to a piece from Olga Khazan in The Atlantichistorically among American women for whom carrying a child to term would be safe, adoption is a remarkably unpopular course of action.  

So why is adoption not seen as a viable option? 

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Navigating adoption: How families can make the process shorter and more affordable

Navigating adoption: How families can make the process shorter and more affordable

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Each year, millions of families hope to adopt a baby in the United States. According to the Adoption Network, just 135,000 children are adopted each year, while an estimated one to two million families are waiting to adopt. But there are numerous obstacles in the way when it comes to building a family through adoption. The United States Child Welfare Information Gateway estimates that families will pay between $20,000 and $45,000 for a domestic adoption, with international adoptions costing even more. It can take years to complete the process, including legal requirements like a home study, and matching with a mother considering adoption.

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‘Love harder’: Couple adopts six siblings after losing preborn son at 36 weeks

‘Love harder’: Couple adopts six siblings after losing preborn son at 36 weeks

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David and Melanie Colclough met as children. After reconnecting later in life, they fell in love, got married, and began their dream of starting a family. But tragedy struck, and at 36 weeks, they lost their baby boy Gabriel due to a placental abruption. Devastated but committed to being parents, the couple began an adoption journey that led them to their new role as parents to six children.

“After I lost Gabriel, there were times that I considered suicide because it felt like my heart had been ripped from my body and I didn’t know how I was gonna keep moving on without my heart,” Melanie told The Today Show.

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WATCH: Teen mom behind viral video shares her pro-life message

WATCH: Teen mom behind viral video shares her pro-life message

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A teenage birth mom’s video message to her newborn son, whom she was placing for adoption, has gone viral years after her story first became public knowledge. Hannah Mongie, 19 at the time, shared her pro-life message to the world in a separate video that detailed why she chose life and how she was conflicted on whether or not to choose adoption.

Since that time, Mongie has been invited to talk shows, including The TODAY Show with Megan Kelly, where she and her son along with his adoptive parents, Brad and Emily Marsh, shared their beautiful story. By filming her message to her son, Mongie shared with the world all of the emotions that birth mothers go through when placing a child for adoption.

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‘There was no talk of abortion’: Celebrity hairstylist on placing son for adoption at age 18

‘There was no talk of abortion’: Celebrity hairstylist on placing son for adoption at age 18

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Celebrity hairstylist Justin Anderson, alum of the reality TV show “Very Cavallari” with Kristen Cavallari, recently opened up during a podcast about placing his son with an adoptive family in an open adoption when he was in college. Anderson, now 40, and his high school sweetheart Debbie, became pregnant during Anderson’s freshman year of college.

On the December 15th episode of the “Scissoring Isn’t A Thing” podcast, Anderson recalled, “When I went to college, she came to visit me one time… and she got pregnant. I come from one of those families that, obviously, the religious stuff, and her the same thing, so there’s no talk of abortion and all that kind of stuff — we’re going to have the baby.

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Police officer and his wife adopt toddler he rescued from abusive home

Police officer and his wife adopt toddler he rescued from abusive home

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Two and a half years after first saving a toddler from an abusive home, an Arizona police officer and his family adopted the little girl. Lieutenant Brian Zach was a patrol officer in Kingman, Arizona, at the time. He responded to a residence check in March 2018, where he found a toddler who was living in abusive home.

Zach told Good Morning America that during the check, he and the little girl, Kaila, “colored [and] snacked … she held my hand and she was just this cute little thing.” Detectives soon arrived at the scene and took Kaila to the hospital for her injuries.

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Forever families: Five of our favorite adoption stories of 2020

Forever families: Five of our favorite adoption stories of 2020

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More than 100,000 adoptions take place in the United States every year. In 2015, about half of those were adoptions through foster care. Whether through a private organization or through foster care, adoption is a gift that helps love and families grow. Here are five of our favorite adoption stories from 2020.

1. “I’m your dad forever”

Robert Carter and kids. Photo via Facebook.

Former foster child Robert Carter entered the foster care program when he was 12 years old, and was unable to see his siblings for years. Once he was emancipated, he was awarded custody of his younger brother and sister, but the experience in the foster care system, away from them, left its mark.

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