And the Survey Says...
When ARISE was in development stages, we knew that gathering information would be a critical part of how we would move forward with the ministry and what our primary goals would be. One of the first "public" steps we took was to create a survey to hear from the very voices who'd be able to share real life experience about adoption and foster care and the support level they received from their parishes. 27 people completed our survey of 14 poignant questions that were directly related to their experience. Here is a sampling of the information from four of those questions:
When asked, "How did the Lord lead your family to consider adoption?" Almost half of the participants (48.15%) indicated that infertility was involved in their decision. But that was overtaken by 55.56% who indicated that, in some way, they'd felt a calling to adopt - an urging from the Holy Spirit or feeling they'd always had inside them!
When asked "How have you responded to orphans cry?" 66.67% indicated "International adoption" and only 7.41% indicated "Domestic adoption." But 25.93% indicated "Both!"
When asked "Do you feel your Catholic Priest supported your family in the adoption process?" over half of the participants indicated YES at 51.85% and NO at 48.15%. We were relieved to hear that more families had a positive experience than not, but we've got some work to do there.
When asked "Do you feel supported as an adoptive family by your Catholic parish?" 55.56% of our participants, sadly, gave us a NO. 44.44% said YES. We find it interesting that many families felt supported by their Parish Priest more than their family of Parishioners! When asked to list any Catholic organizations that supported your adoption financially, 17 out of 27 skipped the question altogether, 8 said "none" and only 2 answered "Knights of Columbus." That result obviously saddened us.
The results of our survey gave us great validation of WHY this ARISE ministry is critical for our Catholic faith. There are so many areas where we - as the body of Christ - need to do a better job of serving adoptive families.
Together, let's rise up and be the change.