Amoris Laetitia 179: Adoption

amoris laetitia memePope Francis on adoption:

179. Adoption is a very generous way to become parents. I encourage those who cannot have children to expand their marital love to embrace those who lack a proper family situation. They will never regret having been generous. Adopting a child is an act of love, offering the gift of a family to someone who has none. It is important to insist that legislation help facilitate the adoption process, above all in the case of unwanted children, in order to prevent their abortion or abandonment. Those who accept the challenge of adopting and accepting someone unconditionally and gratuitously become channels of God’s love. For he says, “Even if your mother forgets you, I will not forget you” (Is 49:15).

What I would affirm from the Holy Father’s pen:

  • Adoption is placed squarely in the perspective of the child: “the gift of a family to someone who has none.”
  • In the US, we might wonder about the legislation comment, but it must be acknowledged that Americans adopt children at much higher rates than the rest of the world. Adoption might be expensive. Adoption might be frustrating for choosy couples.
  • The one miss here is not seeing adoption as only an alternative to abortion or abandonment, but also as a response on behalf of older children who languish in foster care.

For your reference, remember that Amoris Laetitia is online here.


About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in the Pacific Northwest, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
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2 Responses to Amoris Laetitia 179: Adoption

  1. Liam says:

    Well, I suspect he means languishing in foster care as a form of abandonment in the sense of lack of definitive commitment to be made irrevocably part of a family.

    It’s also not only couples that can be choosy. Choosiness can also occur on the side of the agency or organ that sponsors adoptions.

    • Todd says:

      Choosiness is quite appropriate on the part of agencies. Not everyone is cut out for parenthood. Some believe that a bad parent is worse than none. The biggest tragedy is a failed adoption–that happened to one of the young miss’s birth siblings in their adoptive family. And the other sib stayed with the family.

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