"A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows is God in His holy dwelling. God sets the lonely in families..."
Since 2008, Legacy 685, the adoption, foster, and orphan care ministry at Houston’s First, has been connecting, equipping and sustaining families who are making the compassionate choice to adopt and foster children from Houston and around the world. Being led by committed volunteers, the ministry celebrates ten years in 2018 by expanding its presence into surrounding communities in two new ministry locations — our Cypress and Sienna Campuses.
“What began as a small, Sunday gathering and a desire to offset the financial cost of adoption has grown into a holistic ministry to adoptive and foster families across the globe, as well as to orphanages and children’s homes,” said Toni Steere, Director of Legacy 685 at Houston’s First. “Through our Adoption Assistance Fund, over 162 children from 19 different countries have come into forever families — many of those right here in our own community!”
The hope of seeing children emotionally restored and connected with families makes Legacy 685 a unique ministry, as resources flow beyond the walls of the church to provide counseling, mentoring and community for families. Toni and a dedicated team of volunteers have spent years walking with families, pre- and post-placement, providing connection, equipping and the sustaining tools needed to journey with children toward deep healing connections in the context of family.
One of Legacy 685’s core values is capacity-building discipleship. As Legacy 685 comes to additional campuses, ministry staff will remain centrally-located at The Loop Campus while providing well-equipped, trauma-informed leaders — Colin and Katy Sproule and Tyler and Courtney Scott — to carry out all initiatives related to adoption, foster and orphan care at their respective campuses.
Katy and Colin have also served as “mentor parents,” taking into their home two young women who were pregnant or had recently birthed babies whom they had courageously made adoption plans for. Training and helping hands from church members made all the difference in the home they provided for the young mothers as well as for their adoptive family. Their efforts in teaching classes in the Cypress area to pre-adoptive, adoptive and foster parents will be their own version of paying it forward.
“We are excited to bring Legacy 685 to Cypress, but feeling a little intimidated. We have about 15 couples currently involved in the ministry,” said Katy. “We trust that the Lord has put us here, and given us the education to make a difference.”
Now with four children at home, Courtney and Tyler, who serves as the director of Children’s Ministry at the Sienna Campus, are gearing up to launch Legacy 685 at the church to serve families in Fort Bend. In April, the first Sienna Legacy 685 event, Life In Limbo, an interactive, role-playing class, attracted nearly 50 people. “The turnout was awesome,” said Courtney.
The Sienna Campus currently has one family fostering, one family that adopted through foster care, and two families in the process of adopting. “Those who are involved want the new ministry to reach out not just to church members, but to the community as well,” said Courtney. In addition to quarterly events beginning in the fall, Courtney will teach “The Trauma-Competent Caregiver” on Wednesday nights during MidLink at the Sienna Campus.
Adoptive and foster families — and those either going through or interested in the process — are invited to learn more about Legacy 685 at these kick-off luncheons. We also invite people who may want to volunteer with the ministry, too. Click the one at your campus to RSVP!
Administered by Lifesong for Orphans, this Houston’s First fund has had a profound impact over the past 10 years:
Legacy 685’s impact extends beyond Houston as we partner on a continual basis with ministries, orphanages, and other organizations in China, Guatemala, India, Kenya, Romania, Russia and Ukraine, and one that serves multiple nations.