African-American Children Adopted By Mennonite Families

December 27, 2011 Posted by Cecelia Dowdy

If you’ve been reading this blog long enough, you’ll know that I’ve often posted about Amish, Mennonites, and other Plain sects. I found this article interesting – it’s about Mennonites adopting African-American Children.

If you read the article, let me know what you thought about it.

~Cecelia Dowdy~

7 Responses to African-American Children Adopted By Mennonite Families

  1. Jaime Wright says:

    Wow!! I find it a fascinating article. My gut emotion and reaction says WONDERFUL!! A stable home is so important rather than waiting for a same-race household (which could take years). Hopefully, the stability in the home provides a safe haven as they also grow and unfortunately, may experience racism. But then, being of a different “bent” (Mennonite) my guess is they’re already exposed to some discrimination as it is due to that.

    I’m Caucasian, so I tread lightly as I don’t comprehend all the dynamics. But I have several African-American cousins both adopted and natural born and love to them to pieces, so hopefully love and the embrace of family can offer them what a social system can’t.

  2. PatriciaW says:

    Interesting. Did not know of this phenomenon.

    Interracial adoption is a big issue in this country without the additional complication of a faith that is so strict and disconnected to the rest of America. My first thought was what happens for these young women, the 17 yos, as they mature and look to fall in love and have families of their own? Are they so accepted within their community that the young Mennonite men consider them as potential wives and that their parents would accept them as such?

    They probably have a best case scenario since they’ve been in contact with their birth family all along.

    For others, though, where there is no interaction beyond the community at all, what happens if and when they decide to branch out? Like it or not, this is a society that has real issues, big ones, with race. These children will find themselves, as adults in society, unprepared to deal with that.

    I’m not against interracial adoption. I think finding a stable, caring home for the children is most important, but I also think finding one within their culture, if possible, is a very close second.

  3. @Jaime Wright – yes, you’re right about the racism in the Mennonite community. The article does mention that the girls have experienced some racism from the Mennonite school community.

    @PatriciaW – I believe the article may have highlighted someone who was an AA Mennonite and married a Caucasian Mennonite. However, my gut is telling me that the AA girls may not be looked upon as favorably when it comes time for marriage. Not sure how the Mennonite brethren would feel about having an AA wife.

    I think it’s great that the girls are in touch with their birth families because they can experience some AA culture. When AA children are adopted into White families, I feel that the White families are not really in-tune to the difficulties of racism and such because they’ve probably never experienced it.

    However, I do feel that AA children being adopted into a safe, loving home is more important than being placed into various foster homes over the years, which could cause deep emotional problems in their adult years.

  4. Lyn Cote says:

    This was an eye-opener. It reminded me of when I moved to Iowa from the Chicago area, the only people of color were immigrants and black children adopted by whtie families. I thought it was an interesting way to change the face of a state. In the church I attend in WI, a pastor-family is about to adopt 2 boys from Ethiopia. They have been saddened by comments from a few in their family. That made me sad.

  5. Anonymous says:

    we are a mennonite couple who waiting to adopt. we are open to all races. our church is racially diverse and AA children would definitely be able to marry white Mennonites. our best friends are an AA man with a white wife

  6. Waiting and Hopeful says:

    We’re Mennonite and hoping to adopt. There many AA people among our churches. They have absolutely no problem getting married. I don’t think we have as much racism in our circles as the rest of the world does

  7. Waiting and Hopeful,

    thanks for visiting my blog and for leaving a comment.

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