Thankful for adoptive parents
The day before Thanksgiving has become a special one in Bartholomew County.
It was the third time the county court system has participated in the national National Adoption Day, part of a statewide effort to encourage Indiana families to consider providing a permanent home for children who need one. This year, five youngsters were adopted by forever families during the Nov. 22 special event, observed annually the Wednesday before Thanksgiving at the Bartholomew County Courthouse.
National Adoption Day is celebrated on different days throughout the month in the Hoosier State. It is the only day that the Indiana Supreme Court allows families and the media to bring cameras into courtrooms to record the proceedings and the celebrations of uncontested adoptions. About 220 Indiana children were adopted into new forever families this month in courtrooms, with 32 Indiana judges presiding.
“The children who come to us from the Department of Child Services are our most vulnerable citizens,” Magistrate Heather Mollo said to one of the families. “I know you consider him a gift to your family, but the justice system considers you a gift.”
Hot meals, warm environment
Three local free community Thanksgiving meals in Columbus provide warm fellowship for those with nowhere else to go for a meal and those without family nearby. The dinners are open to all, no matter their circumstances, and their appeal this year was evident in the plate count — higher this year at all three sites than a year ago.
About 800 meals were served or delivered during the Feed the Flock event at Columbus Baptist Church, staffed by volunteers from the Baptist church, several other churches and local residents. That’s a record total for the event.
About 700 meals were served or delivered on Thanksgiving Day from First Christian Church, presented by First Christian, Lincoln-Central Neighborhood Family Center and Fed Ex, which delivered the meals.
About 300 meals were served at or delivered from the America and Roby Anderson Community Center, presented by the State Street Area Association. Bartholomew County Sheriff’s Department staff and State Street Area Association volunteers delivered meals for the Nov. 18 program.
It can be simply summed up: Warm meals, warm hearts, warm memories.
Outpouring of help
A tough circumstance and outpouring of generosity resulted in a happy ending for a former Columbus man. Lee Wood, whose feet were amputated when he was a toddler due to a medical condition, had used a scooter to get to and from work in Edinburgh. His scooter was chained to a tree — until a thief stole it.
When word spread about the theft, Wood was contacted by a number of people with offers to help. One offered to pay for Wood’s groceries. Another handed him money while he was at a store. And an anonymous donor gave Wood a blue, Tao Tao 50cc scooter — a newer model of the one that had been stolen.
“I want to tell them, from the bottom of my heart, that I appreciate everything,” Wood said. “I am blessed and thankful and appreciative,” Wood said.