Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Christmas Letter & Adoption News


We are very excited to be spending the Christmas season in our very first house! The tree is up in the front window and decorated, and the “Welcome Moose” is hanging from the front door. We bought our house in March and spent the next two months cleaning up and painting every room. We made the big half-mile move on Memorial Day weekend, and it didn’t take long for it to feel like home. This is the first time we lived by ourselves since we’ve been married!

In June, Amy began working as an adoption caseworker for Adoption Assistance, Inc. She does home studies and post-placement reports for adopting families. This became her full-time job when she left her job in the Alumni Office at Asbury College in September.

Due to time constraints, Matt wrapped up his work as Director of Operations with New Hope International Ministries in August. We are still involved with New Hope, and Matt was elected to the ministry’s Board of Directors in November. Matt is working full-time as Office Manager at the Jessamine County Public Library and part-time in the Asbury College Archives. In April Matt was elected Treasurer of our church, where he also still serves as song leader and trustee.

We are very involved in our church. We have embarked on a building program to expand the Sunday School, youth group, and fellowship areas to accommodate our growing congregation.

This time last year we were very excited about the prospect of bringing home two children from Guatemala, but unfortunately that, like our attempt in Uganda before, fell through. We were heartbroken. When it came time to renew all of our adoption paperwork, we decided to try switching to an adoption program that was moving along well. After much prayer and discussion, we applied for the Ethiopia program. In a matter of a couple of weeks, we were matched with twin 3-year-old girls. The girls’ mother died in childbirth, and they have been raised by neighbors to this point. We are so excited to provide these precious little ones with a loving family, and we can’t wait to bring them home.

We trust that this letter finds all of you doing well and enjoying the holiday season. Next to Calvary, the incarnation has to be the most significant event in human history. May the truth of Immanuel—God with us—bring hope and comfort to you as you celebrate the birth of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. We love you all.

~ Matt & Amy


Our little girls are from the Gumuz region of Ethiopia. We know that their mother died in childbirth, their father has never been in the picture, and they were raised by neighbors. No one knows their birthdate, so we get to choose! (Still working on that.) They are about three years old and healthy. Their father signed the relinquishment paperwork, and the local courts have approved them to be adopted. On December 26th, our case goes before the court in the capital city of Addis Ababa, and if the judge approves the adoption, we will be able to travel to Ethiopia within 4-6 weeks to bring them home. Hopefully we will be able to travel in early February.

We have decided to name them Esther Ruth (right) and Chloe Grace (left). (Ruth was Amy’s Grandma Neild’s name, and Chloe is Matt’s Grandma Hindman’s middle name.) We will be calling them Essie and Chloe.

We still need to raise several thousand dollars to cover the financial expense of the adoption. We have applied for several grants, but with no positive results as of yet.

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