As Christians, we are all aware of the strength of the family unit. But what of those children who, for whatever reason, don't have a family they can call their own? A family in whom they can find and acquire that strength?
In Florida, over 850 children are waiting for a forever family; over 450 are African-American with most being over the age of 8. Finding a permanent home for them is challenging. And in Jacksonville alone, 144 children of all ages are available for adoption. These statistics have not escaped One Church One Child of Florida (OCOCFL). This faith-based organization recruits and refers families interested in adopting children from Florida's foster care system. They also provide adoption-related services.
In an effort to engage churches to promote public adoption, OCOCFL, Family Support Services of North Florida (FSS) and the Florida Department of Children and Families (DCF) have come together to co-host a FREE Adoption Prayer Breakfast on Friday, September 16, 7:30 a.m., at EverBank Field,otherwise known as the Jacksonville Jaguars stadium.
In addition, there will be The Winning Team's 1st Annual Jacksonville Gala reception on Thursday, September 16, 6:30 p.m., at Jacksonville's EverBank Field's West Touchdown Club. A donation of $10 is requested.
The keynote speaker is Florida Senator and Democratic Whip Anthony 'Tony' Hill. Special guests include Governor Charlie Crist, City Council President Jack Webb, Father George Clements and Gordon Johnson (co-founders of One Church One Child ), DCF Secretary George Sheldon and FSS CEO Jim Adams.
Adams stated, 'The purpose of the One Church One Child campaign is to encourage each congregation to adopt one child, not literally (though that would be OK, too), but by praying for them, sending cards, giving them attention, providing positive re-enforcement, and helping them to know that they do matter. Prayer is so powerful, and I believe if we pray for them, they will find a good home. The difference this would make could be amazing.'
OCOCFL, FSS and DCF are inviting all Jacksonville-area clergy, churches and its leaders to this breakfast and gala and to partner with them in this endeavor. In so doing, public adoption awareness is increased within the churches as well as the ability to identify potential adoptive families.
Matthew 25:40 tells us, 'I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these my brothers, you did for me.' And who is more precious to our Lord Jesus Christ than our children.
So come and join this opportunity to bless and to be blessed. Registration is limited. RSVP by calling 1-888-283-0886 or go to www.ococfl.org.