Ember Ngur’s Powerful Testimony and Q&A (mp3)

 

Ember’s Testimony/Q&A (mp3)

Hey TD!

Wow, what a powerful and moving V4V weekend that was for those who participated.  God was in our midst stirring our hearts and challenging the way we live our lives. One highlight was Ember Ngur’s sharing and Q&A at the Hsiehs’ home on Saturday.

Ember Ngur’s Testimony/Q&A

0:00 – 15:12  Ember’s Story

Q&A

15:39 – What happens to kids after doing foster therapy?

16:35 – How did you get involved with CarePortal?

17:45 – Are there qualifications for fostering? What are they?

18:37 – Why did you move to CA?

*19:35 – Where there times when you didn’t want to love someone? How did you overcome it? Did you have any kids that were hard to love?

*23:06 – What kind of person was your father like? The kind of person who can listen to God’s plan and do everything. What did you do after?

27:38 – What are your siblings doing?

30:00 – Did you have a community to support your family in fostering?

30:54 – Did all your siblings respond well for taking in foster children?

31:50 – Fostering is supposed to help kids. Why are the statistics so bad with respect to the kids who have gone through foster care?

*33:21 – What would you say to a youth group like ours – suburban, middle class, cautious, achievement oriented, etc.? Any “kick-in-the-pants” charge or encouragement for us?

39:00 – Do you have any amazing stories of transformation where the kids completely turned their lives around?

41:33 – How did you guys approach the kids that faced a lot of trauma and weren’t really connected with society?

*43:31 – “Comfortable” is our church’s middle name. Can you just give us what you really want to say – what the Lord wants you to tell us, without worrying about offending us. In other words, preach it, Sista!

46:10 – With the last young man you mentioned, how did he do after leaving home after a year? Do children know that they just have to go? Or does it cause more feelings of loss after being in a beautiful home and then having to leave?

48:58 – How did differences in culture (Nigerian/American) affect how your family fostered?

52:03 – The stats on fostering (racially)

*54:34 – Ember leads a powerful and stirring time of prayer and beseeching God on TD’s behalf, that God would spectacularly transform the members of TD into courageous Christ-followers and Christ-ambassadors.

* The entire Q&A is worth listening to, and these are particularly poignant.

Pics and Videos from V4V Weekend!

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2020 V4V Group Pic

Video – Breaking the 30 hour silence!

Video – Celebrating!

Hey TD!

To see the photos and videos from the 2020 V4V weekend, click on the link below!

2020 V4V Photos and Videos

Great job TD’ers! Let’s keep moving forward in serving and advocating for vulnerable children and families in Jesus’ Name!

V4V Sunday Service Song/Presentation

2020 V4V Sunday Service Presentation

2020 V4V Song – Is This What Love Looks Like?

Hey TD!

Here are the videos of our V4V presentation and song, “Is This What Love Looks Like?” that we did last week.  May they encourage you and remind us why we are doing what we’re doing.

 

Older Child Adoption

Their Forever Place

Holt Int’l video asking older waiting kids about what it is like to be adopted

Hey TD!

Many of you made a promise before God at TD to be sincerely praying what God would have you do in terms of helping the fatherless (or parentless).  Have you done that?  Has He responded? Or have you listened?

The answer won’t likely strike you like a lightning bolt, but rather, will likely lead you to a longer term perspective.  Whatever the case may be for you, please honor your commitment to pray, then listen well, and then go the direction God wants you to go.

In my family’s case, when heading down the road to adoption, we originally planned to follow God’s lead and adopt two sisters from China, aged 11 and 7.  We didn’t ever really consider adopting a teenager; yet that’s exactly what God had in mind both for us and for Stella all along.  We just didn’t know it yet.  We had to start walking in the direction we believed God was leading us to and He directed who we should be with.

TD, just start walking in ways you know would generally honor God; He’ll direct you to the specific steps you should take, the situations you are to be a part of, and the people you are to engage with.  When He leads and we follow, it’s a perfect match every time!

During Adoption Awareness Month, we’ve been showing you videos to get more familiar with the adoption landscape.  This time, watch, listen, and pray as teenagers your age share their feelings about what it is like for them to be adopted into a family that loves them.

– Arthur

 

 

Want to Know What The Adoption Process and Journey Look Like?

“Welcoming Willa” video with the Veldkamp Family

Hey TD!

As we highlighted in TD on Friday, November is National Adoption Awareness Month.  Most of you raised your hands to commit to seriously praying about what God would have you do with respect to helping address the world’s orphan crisis.  I shared with you how God has used other teenagers within their own families to help change the lives of some orphans through adoption.

I don’t know what God has in mind for you with respect to the orphaned, but I do know that you are to be involved in helping the fatherless in some way, shape, or form.  As Mary Beth Chapman reminds, “Not everyone is called to adopt, but everyone is called to do something.”

So, we will be highlighting various aspects of adoption on our blog this month to help you get more familiar with the ideas, language, and culture of adoption.  From these posts and videos, and through your commitment to pray and then act as God leads, we look forward to seeing how God will work in you and through you.

“Not everyone is called to adopt, but everyone is called to do something.”

– Mary Beth Chapman

Today, we’ll be highlighting what the adoption process and journey look like … in 10 minutes … through the Veldkamp family!  Their journey was very similar to ours, as they used the same agency we did (Holt Int’l) and went through similar family prepping, paperwork, and logistics (both in the US and in China).  We even visited some of the same places and stayed in the same hotel!  And like us, they too adopted a treasure!

Enjoy and reach out to anyone in my family if you’d like to know more about the process!

– Arthur

 

 

Happy 1st Anniversary, Stella!

first day

The first day we met Stella in China

Scrapbook

Celebrating 1 year together!

Hey TD!

One year ago today, we officially adopted Stella as our daughter.  So today, we celebrated Stella’s adoption day with her favorite food: hot pot! I guess you can get the girl out of China, but you can’t get China out of the girl! 🙂

It’s hard to imagine that it’s already been a full year since we adopted Stella.  It’s been quite an incredible journey of life and love together, and you all at TD have been such an important part of helping her adjust to life in America.  Thank you!

We love having Stella as a full-fledged member of our family; each one of us loves and admires her quite a bit and can’t imagine life without her.  We look forward to what God has in store for us and for her, and we know that you all will have an important role to play in her life as well.

Here’s to new beginnings, God’s grace, and the love of family!

– Arthur

 

In Memory of Molly Holt – A True Hero

Hey TD,

Especially in light of our focus on Downward Engagement, you need to read the moving biography of Molly Holt, a life so well lived.  Molly is the daughter of Harry and Bertha Holt, the pioneers of international adoption and founders of Holt International, through whom we were able to adopt Stella.

Her life is an inspiration to us all and needs to be emulated by more Christians, to the glory of God.  Please read and then pray for God’s will to be done in your lives. – Arthur

In Memory Of Molly Holt

It is with profound sadness that we share the heartbreaking news that Molly Holt, daughter of Holt founders Harry and Bertha Holt, passed away early in the morning on May 17 in Korea. She was 83 years old. 

In South Korea, Molly was known by many names, from the Mother Teresa of Korea to the Mother of all Korea’s Orphans. Although she devoted her life to caring and advocating for children and adults with medical, developmental and physical needs in Korea, she leaves a legacy that is felt around the world.

Born on November 24, 1935 in Firesteel, South Dakota, Molly was the second eldest daughter of Harry and Bertha Holt, who pioneered international adoption in the mid-1950s and later founded Holt International. Molly attended high school in Creswell, Oregon, and later graduated from both the University of Oregon and Sacred Heart Hospital, where she earned a nursing degree in 1956.

The summer of that same year, Molly traveled for the first time to South Korea — fresh out of nursing school, and ready to help her father care for children left orphaned and abandoned in the wake of the Korean War. A devout Christian like her parents, Molly had a vision for her future while in Korea. “I felt that this was where the Lord would have me be for the rest of my life,” she later said.

Molly would go on to spend most of her adult life at the Ilsan Center in Korea, a nurturing, long-term care home that her parents built in the early 1960s for children and adults with special medical, developmental and physical needs. As a nurse and foster mother to the residents of Ilsan, Molly worked to ensure they received the specialized care they needed to reach their potential and live as independently as possible. Through her tireless advocacy, Molly also made it possible for many children in care at Ilsan to join loving, permanent families through adoption. Today, hundreds of families adopt children with special needs every year from countries around the world. But long before it was common, Molly actively sought families for the children who others considered “unadoptable.” Like her parents before her, Molly helped change the culture of adoption by showing that every child is equally worthy of love and acceptance, and that every child deserves to be part of a family.

Only a few times in her life did Molly leave the Ilsan Center for extended periods, and only to pursue additional training so that she could better meet the needs of the children and adult residents of Ilsan. She studied at Wheaton College in Wheaton, Illinois, attended Korean language school and Multnomah School of the Bible, did post-graduate work in special education at the University of Oregon, and in December 1991 she earned a master’s degree in special education and rehabilitation from Northern Colorado University. Throughout her life, she received many honors, including a presidential award, the National Order of Civil Merit from Korea in 1981, World Vision’s Bob Pierce award in 1984 and in 2009, for her lifetime of dedication to orphans and people with disabilities, she received the Royal Order of Merit from the king of Norway.

Diagnosed with multiple myeloma in 2013, Molly nevertheless remained steadfast in her commitment to the children and adult residents of the Ilsan Center. Despite her declining health, she said that she would devote her remaining life “to the things that she loves with her whole heart.” Molly never married or had children, but to the residents of Ilsan — many of whom are now in their 50s and 60s — Molly was their only family. They called her “Unee,” or big sister, a name that Molly cherished.

“Molly Holt moved so many with her tireless and admirable efforts, especially for those children with mental and physical disabilities,” says Stephen Noerper, senior director of the Korea Society and senior advisor to the United Nations. “As a brother of adopted, special needs siblings, I salute and admire her legacy of service. She offered six decades of tireless devotion, stood as a credit to her brave parents, and touched, formed and grew many through her compassion. The Korea Society and the entire community of those bent on international friendship and support extend deepest condolences to her family and friends and the entire Holt organization. To Molly Holt’s nobility, spirit and service, all tribute and our love and heartfelt prayers.”

Of Molly’s passing, Lee HongKoo, former prime minister of the Republic of Korea, wrote, “The contribution of Molly Holt to humanity and humanism … is a historic achievement. The modern history of Korea will record her achievement with gratitude and admiration. Many of us in Korea join the Holt adoptee community in recording our love and farewell.”

“I am saddened to hear of the passing of Molly Holt,” says Oregon senator Ron Wyden. “Although she lived most of her life in Korea, all of us in Oregon consider her an exceptional Oregonian.  Molly leaves a legacy of caring and compassion that will endure for generations to come.  Her devotion to orphaned children in Korea and around the world touched the lives of thousands of children and families and changed the hearts and minds of many more for the better.”

Steve Stirling, president and CEO of MAP International, lived at the Ilsan Center in Korea before he was adopted in 1966, at the age of 11. “I thank God for Molly for faithfully serving those in need through Holt and living in Ilsan to care for disabled residents,” he says. “While we will miss you now, I will rejoice when we unite for eternity in Heaven with our Lord and Savior Jesus. So long for now until we meet again in our forever home.”

Please pray for Molly’s family and for the many people who have loved her that they might find peace and comfort in their memories.

Services for Molly will be held in Korea at 10:00 a.m. on May 21 at Holt Ilsan Center of Korea. Molly’s family requests that gifts be made in her honor to the Molly Holt Fund for Children With Special Needs. If you would like to share memories or photos of Molly Holt, please email them to photosubmission@holtinternational.org.

By Robin Munro

A Meaningful Father’s Day Video – “Fatherless to Fatherfull”

Happy Father’s Day to your fathers, TD! (Please make sure to honor them!)

I watched this video during church service this morning at Menlo Church up here in Menlo Park. I cried.

Just watching and listening to these two uber cute(!) sibling adoptees, and considering the power and truth behind what they were saying left me in tears. I don’t even think they know the full import and power of their video; but God often works through the least of these.

Enjoy and consider the love of God, your true “really” Father in your life! – Arthur

Arthur’s Confession – “I’m Adopted”

Show Hope

Hey TD,

Most of you probably have never thought about me in this way … and in a way, I’m glad … but sometimes, it’s good to come back to the truth of things and to remind myself (and you) that … I’m adopted.  It’s true.  And it’s the best thing that has ever happened to me. Adoption is beautiful, life-saving, life-giving, and life-transforming.  I am proud to be adopted.

I live the life I now live, with the confidence, and empowerment, and joy, and purpose, and delight, and hope, and love, and enthusiasm, and fulfillment, and opportunity, and perspective, and blessing, and richness, and family, and friendships, and fellowship, and satisfaction, and peace, and … security … I now live with, because of one simple fact:

I’m adopted.

You see, my natural father did not teach me how to live the right way.  He taught me how to lie, cheat, steal, and live for myself.  He taught me to compete against people and get my worth from outdoing others.  He didn’t teach me to rest and be satisfied in doing my best and in empowering others to do theirs.  He didn’t teach me to know THAT was success.

Nor did he teach me the right way to view the opposite sex, with sacredness and honor.  Instead, he taught me to look at them as a means of titillation and self-gratification, like he did. He wanted me to use them, not serve them; to lust for them, not love them; to idolize them, not cherish them.

I could go on at length about my natural father, but I’d rather not.  I’m actually still working out and undoing his pervasive influence and its effects in my life.  It’s still going to take a while, but it’s happening.  My adoptive Father is making sure of that; and I love Him for that.

I could go on and on and on about my adoptive Father.  In fact, I have and I do. For hours at a time. In a group called Total Devotion. A few Fridays a month. For thirty-three years.  And I can’t stop!  There’s so much more to tell you!  He is THAT good!

Here’s how good my adoptive Father is:  He wants to offer His Fatherhood to you as well.  Here’s how impactful He’s been at my heart level: I don’t feel threatened or jealous by Him wanting to share His love with you.  In fact, I want you to experience it too!

I was introduced to my adoptive Father by my biological father, Kuo-Chen Hsieh.  I owe my biological dad so much for insisting that I go to church so I could meet my eventual adoptive Heavenly Father.  My life has literally been changed forever.

I’d love to do the same for you.  If you want to get to know my adoptive Father, I’d love to introduce you to Him.  He’s amazing.  Just let me know and I’ll arrange a time for all of us to meet!

My old life with my natural father:

“You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies.” John 8:44

“The one who does what is sinful is of the devil, because the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the devil’s work. No one who is born of God will continue to sin, because God’s seed remains in them; they cannot go on sinning, because they have been born of God. This is how we know who the children of God are and who the children of the devil are: Anyone who does not do what is right is not God’s child, nor is anyone who does not love their brother and sister.” 1John 3:8-10

“As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our flesh and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature deserving of wrath.” Eph. 2:1-3

My new life with my adoptive Father:

“And, “I will be a Father to you, and you will be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty.” 2Cor. 6:18

“Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.” John 1:12-13
“For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God. The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.” The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children.  Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.” Rom. 8:14-17
“But when the set time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those under the law, that we might receive adoption to sonship.” Gal. 4:4-5
I sincerely hope my real Father adopts you soon! – Arthur