Tezera Kebede – Orphanage Director
Orphans and Widows’ Home

We had a great question from one of our blog readers:

I just read a little on your blog page (great blog and website, btw!!!). If you get a moment, what happened with the baby boy? Sweet little thing, I am praying that he is alright. Blessings, Cathy

So glad that you asked, Cathy! Here is Joy’s response, retelling in more detail the story of this sweet baby boy.

Three months ago an older, very poor woman gave birth to a baby boy. She simply had no resources or strength to care for him, so she brought him to our orphanage wrapped in rags. We cleaned him up, fed him and tenderly cared for him, but he was in a weakened condition and became quite sick. Our nurse took him to the doctor who placed him in the local hospital on antibiotics for his pneumonia. Pneumonia in Ethiopia can be, and quite often is, fatal. Over the next month or so, this tiny baby was in and out of the hospital struggling for survival. He was not gaining weight. When I went to see him in October nothing could have prepared me for the condition of this extremely poor, crowded and dirty hospital. A nanny stayed with our baby around the clock providing full care including his bedding, food, diapers and clothing. I was alarmed at this tiny patient’s condition and obvious deterioration, so we made the decision to pack him up and take him to Addis Ababa where more sophisticated care could be provided.

A very capable pediatrician examined him in the Korean Christian Hospital in the capital city, and he immediately hospitalized him and put him on a broad spectrum antibiotic. This hospital was clean and well staffed. His nanny at his side, our precious boy received good care. The doctor also was concerned about his heart and ordered an echocardiogram and EKG. The results of those tests showed he has a ventricular septal defect which is a small hole in his heart. This can be corrected with surgery, or many times it closes by itself over time.

Now Baby M is back in our nursery and is doing very well! With his pneumonia finally cleared up, he is gaining weight and is a happy boy. Every month our staff takes him back to the cardiologist in Addis Ababa and the doctors feel confident that his heart problem will resolve on its own. And now he is available for adoption!

Many, many people have lifted this fragile little one up before the Lord and we know that God’s hand is on him. One of our orphanage directors has a prayer room in her compound. Tezera is a prayer warrior of the first order, and once a week her prayer team meets for 24 hours of prayer. While we were in Addis with the baby, Tezera called me and said, “Joy, Baby M’s heart is okay. During our prayer time last night, God said he will have no trouble with his heart.” That news came at a time when I wasn’t all that sure of the prognosis! What an encouragement to know that this godly woman prays for the children.

If any of you reading this has a heart to pray, would you consider praying for one of our children until he (or she) is given a permanent family to love, care for and guide him? My goal is to have every child in our adoption program matched with a prayer partner here in the U.S. who will commit to diligently pray for that child. When a family has chosen a particular child, then we ask that you continue to pray for the child and his family until the adoption is finalized.

What an honor we have to stand boldly before the Lord of all holding the hand of one child. John 15:5 says, “Apart from Me, you can do nothing,” and we know that is absolutely true!

Joy Casey