Christians have a long history of caring for children in need. The Christian apologist St. Basil the Great opened what is regarded as one of the first orphanages in the fourth century. He dedicated a wing of his monastery to raising and educating orphans where the monastics acted as “surrogate parents.” And here, in what would later become America, some of the first orphanages were founded in the early 18th century by Catholic nuns and Lutherans.
Now, Christians are being shut out of child welfare programs altogether — simply because of their beliefs about the body and our human identities.
That’s what happened to Jessica Bates, and that’s why my firm, Alliance Defending Freedom, is standing with her to challenge an unconstitutional Oregon policy in court.
Jessica is a mother of five children, a part-time ultrasound technician, and a devout Christian. She’s also a widow. Her late husband died in a car wreck several years ago. Then, after hearing a broadcast about one man’s adoption story, she felt convicted. The Bible describes God as a Father to the fatherless and a protector of widows. He had provided for her. Now she felt called to extend that same love to a child in need.