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March 19, 2011


This morning my friend Grace shared the news that last Wednesday March 16, 2011 MPAK USA, the United States arm of Mission To Promote Adoption in Korea launched a blog:

Founder Stephen Morrison’s article “In Defense of Adoption”, which originally appeared in the Fall 2010 edition of Korean Quarterly is an excellent introduction to MPAK’s origins and vision to promote the adoption of orphaned Korean children. Morrison, homeless and alone in Korea at age five, was institutionalized at six and lived in an orphanage until he was adopted by a family in America at the age of fourteen.

MPAK has been instrumental in promoting domestic adoption in Korea and in supporting Korean families who adopt domestically. While open (publicly acknowledged) adoption has been the cultural norm in the USA for a few decades now, it is a very new thing in Korean culture. Families who openly adopt in Korea are breaking new ground culturally and MPAK is standing beside them, organizing support groups, collecting and disseminating adoption information, and creating social opportunities like this picnic for domestic adoptive families to help gradually bring open adoption into the mainstream of Korean culture.

Why, I have been asked, being an American family with no Korean heritage, would we be enthusiatic supporters of the adoption of Korean children by Korean and Korean-American families? Ultimately, that line of reasoning goes, there will no longer be a need for families like mine to adopt Korean children.

That is exactly right. I believe God led my husband and I to our children because he wanted them to grow up in a family, not an institution, and at the time they were born, there were no families in Korea or in Korean-American heritage programs in the U.S. who were seeking to adopt children with our girls’ risk factors and/or manifest special needs.

While I recognize that others don’t share this opinion, I believe that what God wills (what he plans and causes to happen) is always right. Therefore, our family is not second-best for our particular children. Despite our human shortcomings, including the fact that we cannot impart their birth culture first hand, we are confident in God’s plan in creating our family.

However, that doesn’t mean that I don’t dream of a day when adoptions like ours are exceedingly rare because they are largely not necessary. Not necessary because first mothers have the resources and supports in place in Korea to raise their children if they choose to. And for the those children whose first families still make an adoption choice, not necessary because Korean families at home and abroad are adequately educated and supported to be able to adopt orphaned Korean children.

Besides being in philosphical agreement with MPAK’s vision, I’ve seen their work in Korea first hand, and endorse it with enthusiasm. I’m glad Morrison has started a blog to keep us abreast of MPAK’s work in the USA and will be following!

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