May is Foster Parent appreciation month.
Please join us in celebrating our remarkable foster parents! There will never be enough words to thank our foster families for all they sacrifice to love vulnerable children in our community. There will never be adequate gifts to give, or sufficient stories to share—for all I witness and the precious moments of our foster families serving in Jesus name. Serving alongside these mighty examples is an honor. We invite you to find ways to love and rejoice in our foster families throughout the month.
Patrick and Bethe are quick to share their two daughters were the initiators of their foster care journey. At 13 and 10 years of age, the Adam girls made their own brochure to present the idea of Connect Care to their parents. With Patrick and Bethe’s gifts and heart for ministry already in place, foster care became an extension of their family’s service. The entire Adam family share a passion to love the vulnerable children in our community and view it as another way the gospel can be lived out.
Josh & Julia thoughtfully maintained necessary emotional resources for the 4-year-old little girl in their care. The loss of the little girl’s father in past months left her mom and siblings grieving and adjusting on multiple levels. As the little girl’s mom worked to stabilize family needs, the Ayers made sure to keep the telehealth counseling appointments already in place for the little girl as emotional support was a primary goal for her overall care. The Ayers three children served as a loving distraction for her and quickly included this little one into their family rhythm. We are grateful for the Ayers sensitivity and holistic approach to all the various needs of little ones in our Connect Care program.
Doug and Ruth are a couple with a contagious energy to love children through foster care. The Broadway’s thoughtful team dynamic allows them to problem solve amidst their work/life balance, while caring for the needs of little ones. To the Broadways, loving your neighbor means welcoming a child into your home and supporting their mom in her time of need. We are honored to serve alongside such a loving example.
During the pandemic, Ed and Tara maintained three months of care for a 2.5-year-old little boy, a longstanding relationship since his birth. As COVID and lockdown created hurdles last year, this little one’s single mother had nowhere to turn for daycare support. The Cox’s remained unwavering to provide safety in a familiar environment, until new solutions were created. The Coxes have served as foster parents for 20+ years, bringing numerous little ones into their flexible family rhythm. We continue to be grateful for the wise nature of the Coxes as they often reflect on the many children added to their “family tree” throughout their tenure as foster parents.
As they began the licensing process, Spencer and Chelsea expressed the reasoning behind their unwavering desire to serve through ConnectCare. They shared their memory of being in church and hearing the need for more foster parents. The down-to-earth couple felt a desire to help meet that need and have remain loyal to completing the licensing protocol. They’re looking forward to supporting struggling families in our community. The Evans maintain a spirit to serve unconditionally and trust how God will use their family to spread the love of Christ.
Trey and Bethany preserve an energetic and nurturing foster home for children in their care. One 2-year-old little boy initially arrived timid, and a bit delayed with developmental markers. After a month of care, this little one blossomed and increased his abilities to match that of his peers; not to mention he stole the hearts of everyone around him. A couple letters from the Lewis family along with loving goodbyes from new church friends, all followed this child back home to his mom. An entire community served to meet the needs of this little boy and model Christ’s love throughout.
Joe and Jennifer Reidelberger have been Foster Parents with CFS for 20 years. With every visit, the Reidelberger’s not-so-little children, Mariah, Logan and Kayden, inquire by name of little ones who have stayed in their home over the years. Foster Care has always been a family affair for the Reidelbergers and it is not uncommon to get a text when their home is empty asking when another child will be placed in their home. Whether meeting face to face at a local gas station or connecting on the phone, Jennifer is gentle and compassionate in greetings with the moms we serve. Joe shares the influencing opportunities he’s had to talk with people about foster care when running errands with little ones in tow. The Reidelberger family continues to model the love of Christ to all on their daily path, as they embrace hurdles and joys alike for struggling little ones in our community.
Jeff and Heather opened their home to a set of siblings during the pandemic; a 2-year-old little boy and 4-month-old little girl. The toddler was working through past trauma and his problem behavior was the only language he knew how to share. Our gentle foster parents worked tirelessly to create a healthy emotional support system throughout care. The Stiles three children helped to create a structured schedule and an unconditional loving environment for the pair. Together, these allowed for trust to be built and growth to occur. It is a pleasure to serve alongside well trained and gifted foster families such as the Stiles. They are convicted and determined to meet specific needs and with the appropriate tools for each little one’s long-term development.
Paul and Mary hold high expectations for themselves as foster parents. After becoming licensed, they welcomed many little ones into their home through CFS Connect Care as well as the state foster care system. Through training and personal experience, the Thomas’s blended family is well equipped to parent at-risk children with a variety of needs and backgrounds. The Thomas’s love for children and keeping siblings together remain an admirable goal they keep at the forefront of serving in the name of Jesus.
Carol is a retired teacher and sends a picture book home with each child who stays in her home. In it she documents various activities and developmental accomplishments shared while in her care. Recently, I reached out to share an update with Carol about a 4-year-old boy who was placed in her home for a couple months. Carol remembered him fondly and reminisced about his powerful story. I shared with Carol that the little boy had recently misplaced the picture book she sent home with him. His mother said this book had been, “a constant source of comfort to him over the years.” Carol didn’t skip a beat and sent the little one a new picture book with it a letter expressing her love and care. Carol remains intent to welcome little ones into her home, believing passionately in giving back to the next generation of children in our community.