“To adopt a child is a great work of love. When it is done, much is given, but much is also received. It is a true exchange of gifts.” —St. John Paul II
Adoption is a blessed way to create or expand a family, the Church says. Various New Testament verses mention the righteousness of supporting the neediest among us, including newborns.
Jesus encouraged adoption; He said that whomever received ‘these little ones,’ received Him. Let’s not forget, too, that He was raised by a foster father who loved Him as a son.
“Adopting children, regarding and treating them as one’s own children, means recognizing that the relationship between parents and children is not measured only by genetic standards,” St. John Paul II said. “Procreative love is first and foremost a gift of self. There is a form of ‘procreation’ which occurs through acceptance, concern, and devotion.
“The resulting relationship is so intimate and enduring that it is in no way inferior to one based on a biological connection,” he continued. “When this is also juridically protected, as it is in adoption, in a family united by the stable bond of marriage, it assures the child that peaceful atmosphere and that paternal and maternal love which he needs for his full human development.”
Local Catholic couples who want to adopt children have several options including a Catholic adoption agency in Los Angeles and an online agency that matches pregnant women and families. Adoption.com notes that there are a number of privately owned and operated independent Catholic adoption agencies and foster homes to be found online and throughout the world.
At Catholicadoptiononline.com, more than 120 adoptions are facilitated each year. The site matches pregnant women and women who’ve recently given birth and wish their child to be raised in the Catholic faith with Catholic couples who want to adopt.
Holy Family Services Adoption & Foster Care at hfservices.ladiocese.org is an accredited California state-licensed, nondenominational, nonprofit 501(c)3 adoption and foster care agency established in 1949.
The organization provides services to birth parents and prospective adoptive parents, adult adoptees (adopted through HFS), and those who wish to become temporary, short-term foster parents.
As a licensed Adoption Service Provider, the agency provides birth parent counseling to those working with other adoption providers and conducts home studies for prospective adoptive parents involved in international and other state adoptions.
With four offices in five southern California counties, HFS is licensed to serve residents of Los Angeles, Orange, Ventura, San Bernardino and Riverside County.
The Church most notably supports adoption as a life-giving alternative to abortion. As such, adoption is a gift for everyone involved, notes a recent story in The Catholic Spirit, published by the Archdiocese of Minneapolis and St. Paul. The child entering a new family is given a new chance to live, and the adoptive mother and father – who have hoped for a family – can raise a new family member. In addition, the biological parents who want the best for their child are assured of a good home for them.
“All children are ultimately gifts from God,” the story notes. “The Church wants what is best for every child, and it works in various ways to support their physical, social and spiritual well-being.”