We just heard from mom after the birth family meeting. Her note is below:
"We just got back from the birthmother meeting.........It was good but really, really hard. Casey and I were both sobbing by the time it was over.
The dad, mom and both grandmothers came along with someone else....an aunt I think. They brought a photo album of Abenezer, traditional clothing, his favorite clothes (a suit) and pop and cookies to eat with them.
It such a long and very emotional story. I'll tell you more when we get home. But it was very good. A was crying by the end and his dad came and placed his hand in mine and gave him a kiss. It was heartbreaking. The mom could barely walk. The dad's mom hugged and kissed me and gave me a bouquet a flowers. Almaz said that it went very well and that hardly anyone ever gets a photo book like that. They even wrote on the back of each photo in Amharic and English of what and who it is. They also gave me their phone numbers. The dad spoke some English.
They kept thanking me over and over...I asked them what they wanted me to tell Abenezer...and they said that they wanted us to teach him in the Lord and to teach him to serve the Lord and love him and everything else would be alright.
I have so much to tell you and share when we're home.
It seems our assumptions that the father was uninvolved were incorrect and that the family is a solid and loving one. Circumstances have forced them to make excruciatingly difficult decisions for their son's future well being.
While we are rejoicing at the privilege of having a new son to raise and nurture while another family is lamenting over the fact that the best thing they can do for their to release him into another family's care. It's very hard to understand but we know that God is sovereign and that He has blessed us immensely.