I won’t go into all of the factors re: why we sent him on this stealth and quickly planned/executed trip to Ghana, because there are internet trolls who don’t need to know every detail of our business. But, that said, I also really wanted to give an update, because there is news (and more importantly, pictures) to be shared with you – our beloved #TeamHanna
Suffice to say, we had reason to believe that our girls’ living situation was not good, and was degrading rapidly. As you can imagine, this literally pained us both and put our stomachs in knots. Since the US hasn’t granted their permission to bring Mary and Comfort home (yet), we’re helpless to change as much of their situation as we would like. Simply put: We want to bring them home, but we can’t, so we sent Doug over to do the next best thing.
Facebook and social media gets a lot of flack these days because of the artificial relationships and blah, blah, blah. While I think this can be true, I also believe that God used these avenues to connect us to people who could help us with extricating the girls from their unsavory situation and worked with us to place them into an incredibly loving and positive foster home. I will always be so grateful for the people who stepped up, and said, “Yes, I will be happy to help,” and “We are walking with you and Doug through this journey.”
The girls are now in a foster home which is a couple of hours from central Accra, and which is in no way, shape, or form a convenient location. However, they are now:
- In a home with a young woman who is running a street ministry for young women, especially those who are pregnant/abused, in dire situations. She is also caring for a beautiful babe who is severely impacted by some cranio-facial issues, and is in the midst of being adopted. She has opened her heart and mindset to caring for these girls until we can.
- In a home with a Ghanaian Auntie working with the foster mom to provide love and support.
- In a home with beds and regular meals.
- Near a school to which we have enrolled them. Doug was even able to talk to the headmaster re: the girls, and they will be happy to receive M and C.
- Near a clinic/hospital.
- In a home with a wifi hotspot so that we can communicate not only with their care-taker, but with them!
- In a home where, in less than 24 hours, their foster mom noted a rash, and started medicating them. Additionally, she also began de-worming meds. Wouldn’t it be great if they could actually get nutrients from their food and grow?
- In a home where they are already making paper chains, doing other crafts, and learning about being part of a family – this includes a chore chart. If they make their beds and sweep their room each day, they get a Pepsi at the end of the week. Could you die at the simplicity and wonderfulness of that?
- In a home where Jesus’ name and His love for them is spoken into their lives.
- In a home where they are known.
The upshot of all of this is that the girls are in a fantastic place, for now, and we are grateful. But the trip, while it had its highlights, was not always sunshine and roses for Doug. It was hard, hard, emotionally and physically exhausting work, and it included another brutal good-bye with Mary and Comfort. However, there were some fun times in addition to being with the girls. During the week, he was in communication with the director of the local orphanage. This gentleman was intrinsic to the entire mission of moving the girls, and the foster home is an offshoot of this orphanage. So, Doug had opportunity to hang out a bit with the children and staff at the orphanage, and made good friends with one of the older boys who works there. The reason I mention this is that one of the pictures is from this orphanage. One day, he brought ice cream to all of the kids. Looking at his face as he handed it out, I just see such gentleness and love. I get to be married to this guy – 24 years next week! – and our kids get to call him dad(dy). Oh, and one more thing. Mary called him, using her foster mom’s phone (he had gone back to Accra, but was visiting the next day), and said, “Daddy, do you think you could buy me some socks and shoes?”. So…he did. Because daddies buy shoes for their little girls.
OK. As promised here are your pictures.
Thank you for your unending support, encouragement and prayers. May the US grant us Visas very soon!