Saturday, October 2, 2010
A little over 19 months after they moved in, we celebrate our adoption surrounded by family and friends! We have already had our family legally recognized but I felt like it was important to include a ceremony to recognize the boys' entire family.
Mateo & Joaquin Walsh
Blessed are you, O Lord our God, Father to us all:
We thank you every day for the blessing of these children
& for this family that you have created through adoption.
Lend us your strength to build bonds of love unbreakable; Your wisdom to prepare these children for the path you have set before them; Your forgiveness for our imperfections as parents.
We ask that you watch over the birth parents of these children,
who by your guidance, helped bring this miracle to pass.
And for all your children still awaiting the blessing of adoption,
We pray you speed their journey to the loving arms of family,
Just as many streams, known and unknown, contribute to a river's strength and course, Mateo and Joaquin's lives will be shaped, in part, by their many tributaries. Joaquin and Mateo are birth children; they are adopted children. They are Liberian and Mexican and they are Irish and Scottish. They are children of God.
They are the sons of A and G and the sons of Megan. Perhaps they will have A's intelligence and courage or G’s tenacity and selflessness. Maybe they will have Megan’s optimism, compassion and sense of humor. We hope they will be blessed with all of these things and more.
This first candle signifies Mateo and Joaquin's biological parents and their extended families. A, G and T are the people who gave them the gift of life. They gave them their beautiful brown eyes and skin, their ancestors and cultural heritage. A is the woman whose womb carried the boys, whose heartbeat soothed them and her arms held them in the moments after they entered this world. G chose to be a father to both children and made the painful decision to seek help when needed. A and G also made the difficult choice to give them the gift of this family.
The second candle represents the families that provided the boys with safety when necessary including, Jan and Bob, Geri and Marc and Brenda. They were the unforgettable interruption that allowed the boys to feel safe in moments of instability. This candle also represents the caseworkers, attorneys, foster families, researchers, therapists and judges who work tirelessly to benefit all the kids in care.
This third candle represents Mateo and Joaquin's adoptive parent, Megan and her extended family and friends. This candle represents the aunties, uncles, grandparents and cousins who surround this family with love, support and encouragement on a daily basis. This candle represents Megan, who is the person who reads their favorite stories thousands of times, tucks them in at night and feeds them when they are hungry. She is the person who teaches them right from wrong, who bandages their hurts, cheers their victories, dreams about their futures and provides for their spiritual, physical and emotional needs on a daily basis. She humbly accepts the responsibility of motherhood with hope, joy and unwavering commitment. We pray that God will grant her the gifts of kindness, patience, understanding and wisdom.
This fourth candle signifies Mateo and Joaquin’s future. Lives filled with the grace of God’s amazing plan for them, love of their birth family, their adoptive family and all of you here. Their potential to impact our world is limitless and will be largely affected by the unconditional love and acceptance in this room. This candle represents the light Joaquin and Mateo will be to the world and the promise in their young lives. God bless these children with wisdom, understanding, peace and the assurance of your love for them now and forever. Guide and protect them throughout their lives and bless them always with the knowledge of Your love and grace.
Please join me in reciting this Irish Blessing
We believe in living deeply,
laughing often and loving always.
We believe we were brought together
to support and care for each other.
We believe that everyone's feelings count
and that the uniqueness of each of us
strengthens all of us.
We believe in the power of forgiveness to heal
and the power of love to carry us through.
We believe in one another,
in this family.
I am proud to introduce to you,
Mateo Owen Perkins Walsh
Joaquin Lamont Armendariz Walsh