The three brothers timidly stepped through the front door of the cottage.
They were carrying only a few personal items, and the clothes they were wearing were tattered and dirty.
“It was the saddest thing,” remembers Broyhill Home cottage mom Betty Porter. “The boys’ shirts, pants, and underwear, all had to be thrown away.”
It took some time for the boys to adjust. A few months passed before the siblings under-stood there were three meals a day, fresh laundered clothes, and crisp, clean sheets regularly placed on their beds. It took even longer for their fears to fade and for dreams about a better future to fill their minds and hearts.
Hunger and physical and emotional neglect are traumatic. Waking up every morning to the same dire circumstances drains every ounce of hope and is long-lasting. No child should have to suffer such a plight.
Two and a half years have passed, Robert age 12, Reggie age nine, and Ralph age seven, are flourishing in Baptist Children’s Homes (BCH) care. Robert loves to fish. Reggie is a Lego mas-ter. Ralph tags along with the older two being mischievous sometimes.
The three brothers were among the thousands of boys and girls living in North Carolina at any given time who need a home and a loving Christian family to care for them. Being in BCH’s care was only a temporary plan. The long-term goal for the boys was to have a family they could call their own and a mom and dad who would love, care, and protect them. Now, the boys’ dream looms on the horizon. This Christmas, they will experience the best gift ever.
Edward and Sara have a large farm where they raise livestock and grow organic crops.
They have an orchard, a cannery, and are candle makers. Most importantly, the couple are believers and have a great heart for children.
Choosing to become foster parents was just the first step for Edward and Sara. They quickly knew after meeting the brothers that they not only wanted to foster the boys, but they wanted to adopt them. The couple has no birth children and desire to share what they have with Robert, Reggie, and Ralph.
Sara sends pictures of the animals, the farm, the house where they live, and the bedrooms the boys will call their own. Betty takes every photo sent and puts them into an album.
Sara and Edward have video chats with the boys, each one getting to know the other better. This Thanksgiving, the boys will have a three-day visit. Robert has located some great fishing locations nearby using Google, Reggie is debating which Lego creation he is bringing with him to share with Sara and Edward, and Ralph is intent on personally meeting each of the animals.
The boys are excited about their new home and Betty is excited for them. “These boys have gone through so much. They are precious and deserve to grow up free of fear and heartache.”
Robert recently pulled Betty aside. He was concerned she would not understand his happiness in leaving her to live with Sara and Edward.
“We have a great life here,” he assured Betty. “I love you and I will miss you and our life here at Broyhill Home.” Betty smiles at the memory.
Plans are being made for the boys to permanently move to the farm in December, in time for Christmas. The youngest, Ralph, was concerned if he and his brothers would receive presents.
He told Sara that Reggie really wanted a Lego White House set with 3,000 pieces this year. Sara assured him that they would have presents, not disclosing particulars. But she said, “The greatest gift this Christmas, will be that we are family.”
Note: The boys names and photo have been changed for their privacy and safety.
Any gift you give between now and January 31, 2023 is matched dollar for dollar up to the challenge gift goal. Just like Robert, Reggie and Ralph, your gift changes children's lives giving them a hope and a future. Please give.
Written by Jim Edminson, Editor of Charity & Children