I'm going to link to a post that I feel that every Christian adult should read. It speaks of the conditions in special needs mental institutions in Eastern Europe. The images the words paint are difficult to wrap your mind around, but the photograph is heart shattering.
Alot of people have asked us, "Why Eastern Europe?" We have been informed that there are special need children all around the whole, including right here in our own backyard(USA). This is so very true. There are children all around the world, the United States included, that are in desperate need of someone to show them the love of Christ. They need to be shown, tangibly, what Christ's love looks like, in their desperate time of need. God is looking for Christian men and women to be his hands and feet to orphans everywhere. God is the one who placed Eastern Europe in our hearts. It is, by far, one of the more difficult routes to take, for a family of our size and financial standings and if it had been our choice, we would haven't picked it. But it is the road God called us to, and after choosing to follow him in obedience, we now see why this is what he had planned for us. His call to our family right is to a little boy in Eastern Europe, who is scheduled to be transferred to a mental institution this month. We are crying out to the Lord daily on his behalf, that this will not happen. Mental institutions are no place for four year old little boys. The Lord is mighty to save, and that is exactly what we are asking of him for Daniel.
While I am not trying to be a downer or ruin anyones weekend, I am trying to raise awareness of the plight of special needs orphans in Eastern Europe. If not adopted, there is no hope for them whatsoever. The statistics I have read say that between 80-85% of children die within a year of being transferred from the "Baby House"(orphanage) to an institution. While abuse and neglect do exisist in some of the orphanages and institutions(as it does all over the world, including in the homes of your friends and neighbors), the poor conditions of older special needs orphans in EE stems more from poverty, than from abuse and neglect.
Please read this post written by a mom and dad who recently returned home from Eastern Europe, bring with them a son whom they adopted from an institution in the same country where Daniel is located. Their hearts are so very full from what they witnessed while in the process of adopting their son. Consider it your duty as a Christian(and in honor of Orphan Sunday, which is today), that you will allow yourself to become aware. You may feel uncomfortable, sad, or down right broken hearted after reading it, but avoiding the truth would just be wrong. Just because you live the American dream, doesn't mean that you can turn a blind eye to people(especially children) who are not so fortunate as to be born middle class Americans. November is adoption awareness month, so be prepared to become aware.
*I may have some minors who have come across my blog via Facebook, or a link from another blog. If this is the case, please check with your parents before reading the blog post that I link to. As your parents, they should be the ones to decided if the article/photograph is appropriate for your viewing. Thanks for your cooperation in showing this respect to your parents.*