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Book Jacket

Trade Paperback
192 pages
Apr 2011
New Hope Publishers

Orphanology: Awakening to Gospel-Centered Adoption and Orphan Care

by Tony Merida & Rick Morton

Review  |   Author Bio  |  Read an Excerpt


In Orphanology, authors Tony Merida and Rick Morton make the assertion that orphan care is a requirement of all Christians. With an estimated 147 million orphans worldwide, the authors contend that because God set the example by adopting us as his own, we are likewise to care for these children.

Both authors are involved in formal ministry and also have experience with adoption: each have welcomed multiple adopted children into their homes. Whereas the authors concede that adoption, specifically, may not be everyone’s calling, care of orphans is. As Rick Morton writes, “Orphanology focuses on orphans and adoption, but at the center of this book, like all of life, is God’s eternal story, the gospel” (p. 7). The book contains an easy-to-read mix of personal adoption recollections from themselves and their extended families and their friends, detailed biblical theses on the subjects of adoption, and how the organized church and its people should, and can, respond to the issue of orphan care.

The first part of this book focuses on the need for orphan care and God’s call to action. Beyond this solid theological argument for orphan care, the second part of the book provides a number of practical guidelines and ideas for how God’s people can participate in this important work. Chapter titles include: "How Do You Lead a Church to Care for the Fatherless?"; "How Do You Do Missions Through Orphanage Funding, Personnel, and Training?"; and "How Can the Church Respond in Foster Care?" The theme of both the book and the authors’ formal ministries is James 1:27: “Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.”

I found the memoirs to be interesting and inspiring, and the practical tips to be clear and biblically based. The book would be an excellent choice for a reading group or a small group study wishing to incorporate both biblical truths and social issues. Highly recommended. – Dr. Jan Reber,

Book Jacket:

Orphanology unveils the grassroots movement that’s engaged in a comprehensive response to serve hundreds of millions of orphans and “functionally parentless” children. You’ll see a breadth of ways to care with biblical perspective and reasons why we must. Heartwarming, personal stories and vivid illustrations from a growing network of families, churches, and organizations that cross culture show how to respond to God’s mandate.

The book empowers:

- churches—to plan preaching, teaching, ministering, missions, funding adoption, supporting orphans;

- individuals and families—to overcome challenges and uncertainties;

- every believer—to gain insights to help orphans in numerous ways.

Discover how to

- adopt;

- assist orphans in transition;

- engage in foster care;

- partner with faith-based fostering agencies;

- become orphan hosts.

Along with their families’ adoption stories, Merida and Morton give steps for action and features on churches doing orphan ministry, faith-based children’s homes, orphan-hosting groups, and other resources.