As we prepare for our January series “i am graceway” we want to introduce you to Pastor Andy Castro and his wife, Christa.  We have dozens of families here at Graceway that have adopted and/or foster young children.  The Castro’s represent one of these families as they currently have one biological son, one through adoption, and are in the process of adopting again.

Their heart for adoption started long before Andy and Christa even met. Both feel strongly about the calling to take care of the fatherless found in James 1:27 that says,  Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.

For Christa her heart for adoption started at age ten.  Hearing of the stories of the orphans in China she remembers thinking that one day she would want to adopt.  Her heart was for an international adoption while Andy’s was for domestic.  They decided to begin with a domestic adoption and the more they dove into the process, the more Christa saw the importance in it.  “Being able to have a relationship with the birth family is vital and important for the family as a whole.” she said. God transformed her heart as she saw how they could help families in our country.

Andy’s desire to adopt also began at a young age. Growing up he had friends in the foster system and those with home situations that were not ideal; often times due to the lack of a good fatherly influence in the home.  “I had it in my heart to not only be a good dad to my biological children, but also for my adopted children that we could potentially take out of a bad situation and raise as our own,” he said.

This Sunday is what is known Orphan Sunday around the country where thousands of people set aside time to care for and pray for orphans in their community. For the Castro’s knowing that people have been praying for them through their adoption journey has been huge. “It’s awesome to see how God works in that way,” Christa said.  For her, this process has shown her grace.  Grace for people who think differently than she does; grace for people whom she once may have been judgmental to in the past.  She said, “It’s about showing grace for people who don’t know Jesus, but need Him in their life.”  

For this family, it is just the beginning.  They hope to, in the future, look at adopting older children who may age out of foster care.