"I will not leave you as orphans. I will come to you." - John 14:18

Friday, April 15, 2011

What Faith Can Do

I was just noticing on our LilyPie ticker that it was a year ago today that we started our adoption journey. One year ago Uganda wasn't even a blip on my radar. I had seen the movie "The Last King of Scotland" but mostly because I love Forest Whitaker. So it is pretty safe to say that I knew Uganda existed...and not a whole lot more. Fast forward one year, one amazing God, and one baby's home full of some of the most beautiful children I have ever seen and I find that half of my heart is in a country that I was barely aware of 365 days ago. Not a day goes by now that I do not think of Uganda, its people, its bright spirit, its need, its beauty and its children. Not a day goes by that I don't anxiously check my email (approximately 8,000 times) to see if it contains the pictures of the children or child who we will have the privilege of calling our own. I dream of being able to see Lake Victoria, visiting the markets, taking in the streets of Kampala and of finally, finally being able to take into our arms these children who have gone through more in their short lives than I have in nearly 4 decades. I will be honest, the waiting is getting really tough, but how worth the wait are these perfect children? How long would I wait, how hard would I try, how many papers would I fill out, how much money would I raise if I knew it was Grace waiting for a home? Or Hattie? Or Mabel? Or Essie? It is every child's basic right to have a family and we are so thankful that our family has been chosen for this purpose. Praise God.

So, in honor of that country I am dreaming of and those millions of sweet children waiting for families to call their own, I encourage you to visit "Bunnies for Bugembe". It works just like Tom's Shoes - you buy a bunny for a child you love and a child in Uganda gets the same bunny. One for one. How beautiful is that?

Monday, April 4, 2011

The Home Stretch!

Dear Family & Friends,

As many of you know, our family has felt called to adoption for several years. We have prayed about it daily for nearly 7 years and, over the past year, God has finally begun to open the doors wide to make this dream a reality for our family. We feel blessed and humbled and pretty scared but we are so honored that we are being trusted with (at least!) one of “the least of these”. The orphan crisis worldwide has reached epic proportions and we feel that we no longer have the luxury of closing our eyes to these fatherless children; instead, we are opening our hearts and our home to children from the African country of Uganda. We have yet to be matched with our child or children but we are praying hard about a sibling group at our baby’s home. The little boy is 3 and his sister is about 3 months old. Adopting two children means additional court costs, visa costs and plane tickets but it also means having someone else in the family that looks like you and understands how it feels to be African & adopted in America.
They estimate there are currently 147 million orphans worldwide and that if only 7% of Christians would care for just one orphan…there would be no more orphans – humbling statistics for sure but, one at a time, we can whittle away at that number. We realize that not everyone feels called to adopt, but we feel sure that everyone feels called to have a heart for the orphan.
The biggest challenge for our family lies not in opening our hearts and our home to more children; it lies in finding the finances to make this happen. Honestly, it is difficult for us to make our needs known but, in the end, we have to put the lives of these children before our pride. So we have written this letter to ask you to pray and consider helping us bring these children home. There are 2 ways you can help:
1. Prayer – Please pray for our children at the orphanage. As I write this letter there is an outbreak of Malaria and many of the children have compromised immune systems due to disease & malnutrition. Please pray a hedge of protection around all of the children who are still healthy and pray for the children who are sick and who have parents worrying over them halfway around the world.
2. Financial Support – Will you please consider making a tax-deductible donation to help us pay the remaining $15,000 we need to complete our travel & court costs?

If you would like to be a part of helping us bring these children home, you can make a fully tax-deductible donation by sending a check to “Lifesong for Orphans”. Our fundraising goal date is May 30, 2011 so please try to send it in by that date. On the memo line please write “Preference Fitzpatrick/#1878 adoption” and send your donation to:

Lifesong for Orphans
Attn: Fitzpatrick #1878
PO Box 40 / 202 N. Ford St
Gridley, IL 61744
*Note: In following IRS guidelines, your donation is to the named non-profit organization. This organization retains full discretion over its use, but intends to honor the donor’s suggested use.

Thank you so much for taking the time to read this letter and for your prayer and support, it means much more than you can possibly know. We will keep you updated with pictures as soon as we have them!

“Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress” – James 1:27


Mike, Libby, Grace, Hattie, Mabel & Essie