South Euclid Couple Adopts Abandoned Child From China
Tim and Deidre Weeks traveled to China in April to adopt their 'Chinese Princess', fulfilling an agreement made early in their marriage, over twenty years ago.
by Angelle M. Jones
||Tim and Deidre Weeks are the proud parents of their little "Chinese Princess".
What would make a blue collar mid life couple, parents of four teenaged and young adult children, cross thousands of miles, and pay thousands of dollars to adopt a child from China? Married 23 years, Tim and Deidre Weeks of South Euclid, Ohio both answer that question easily; "It's God's love"? Members of New Song Church on The Heights, the Weeks family knows without a doubt that Talia Mariah-Mei was sent by God to bless their lives. When asking each of the members of the Weeks family how adopting Talia has impacted them individually, her new mother, Deidre immediately begins to cry. At first she's at a loss for words, but then her words flow, "it's like she's always belonged here", she also said that having Talia has broadened her view of life.
Of course a trip across the world would broaden anyone's view of life, including fourteen year old Christopher who traveled with his parents to China to pick up his new baby sister. When asked how the trip impacted his life, Christopher thought a moment and then said that it made him appreciate being from America. In spite of the vast poverty, fond memories will be remembered as the Weeks, and two other selected families, traveled to China in April to complete their lengthy adoption process. Adding to those memories will be the fact that the Weeks, a Christian family returned with Talia on Good Friday. What a memorial Easter it will be each year as they celebrate not only the resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ, but also their long awaited adoption.
Tim, Deidre and son Christopher went on a seventeen-day journey that took them from Bejing to Changsha, which is in the HuNan Province in China where the orphanage was located. Their journey ended with a trip to GuangZhou to purchase little Talia's visa that was necessary for her to begin her journey to her new home. They even had an opportunity to visit the poverty stricken province where little Talia was reported to have been abandoned on the street before being placed in the orphanage. Deidre said that even though she always felt that God was using her to rescue a child, she now feels that God used Talia to rescue her because life now has more meaning for her.
The adoption has been a faith walk for the entire family. Tim and Deidre reminisced about when they were first married, and their almost immediate agreement to adopt. After the many challenges of marriage and the birth of four sons, they put the desire to adopt aside. "What would make you want to do something like this", was the question asked by one of their children once the issue resurfaced many years later. Believing that the Lord orders their steps, Tim and Deidre began to prepare their four sons for what they believed to be His plan for them. As a family they would begin their journey to adopt their Chinese Princess, as she is now so lovingly referred to by them all. Even though the Weeks sons now ranged in age from 14 through 22, it was with a mix of anxiety and excitement as word came from the Family Adoption Consultants agency of northeastern Ohio, that their wait was over. After approximately 23 years of believing God for the finances, interviews, home studies, family discussions and much prayer, the Weeks family would soon be united with their new daughter and sister.
From the beginning the Weeks family knew that it would be God who would have to provide the funds for the adoption. Their testimony speaks for itself while their faith in God was stretched. Moving forward with the adoption even though they didn't know how it would be paid for, they were introduced to a couple from their church that wanted to help families who could not afford the often enormous adoption fees. Soon after a beneficiary donated funds that helped the Weeks family offset the cost of their adoption, Larry and Nancy Kurlander, who are also adoptive parents, incorporated Operation Starfish.
The words "love has no barrier's" ring true in the Weeks household. Watching the Weeks family with little Talia leaves no doubt that they have been chosen by God to receive her into their lives. Watching her brothers with their new little sister, it doesn't take but a moment to know, that to them, she is truly beautiful, as her Mandarin name, Mei implies. Tim and Deidre both entering mid-life, attribute their strength to parent a one-year-old, to the grace of God. After years of home-schooling their four older sons, training them academically and spiritually, the loving mother now prepares to do the same for her precious daughter Talia, and vows that she will do her best to be sure that Talia knows and appreciates her Asian culture as well.
It's a little past Talia's bedtime and her father agrees to get her ready. Before doing so however, he humbly invites me to view the new addition to their simple yet comfortable home. I get my own personal tour of Talia's beautiful new bedroom, designed and completed by father, sons, and family friend, Dave Hodous of Hodous Construction. Tim Weeks, a man of few words, but obviously a big heart, lets me know that he's a proud papa, sharing how he lovingly shows pictures of his new daughter to his co-workers. Most importantly, it is obvious when you see how much the Weeks family loves little Talia, that true love certainly has no barriers.
If you're interested in learning if you qualify to receive funds or to donate funds to assist with a local or foreign adoption, please contact Larry or Nancy Kurlander of Operation Starfish at 440-446-9487 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org