He and his sister were brought from upstate New York State to the squalor of New York City by their parents and brought to The Children's Aid Society. After his parents signed some papers,they left and he and his sister were separated as well.He would never see any of them ever again.It would be ninety years before his family would learn that his sister died from complications of a tonsilectomy and is buried in an unmarked grave. The fate of his parents remains unknown. The boy's name was George and he was my maternal grandfather.
In 1852, a minister named Charles Loring Brace decided it was not enough to merely talk about loving one another. You needed to put love into action. A year later, Brace, along with other supporters, founded The Children's Aid Society in order to help improve the situations of impoverished children. It is estimated that at the time there were approximately 34,000 homeless children roaming the streets of New York City.
In an effort to improve their chances, Brace sought to place children intofarm families, particularly in the Midwest. Flyers, like the one pictured would be posted in advance so that interested parties could come to the train station at the appointed time to be interviewed by the CAS agent and meet the children.
In 1909, a minister who was an agent for the CAS named Herman Devillo (H.D.) Clarke brought my grandfather and another boy through central Iowa. There my grandfather found a good home.
Rev. Clarke tookhis work very seriously. He not only kept in contact with the children he had placed; he was also known to pay unexpected visits and did not hesitate to remove a child if he felt the situation warranted it. He viewed this work as a part of his calling, not only as a minister but as a Christian. He cared about these children and would pray for them as well as their families, now and in the future.
To the best of our knowledge, my grandfather never came to know Christ but his wife did. Most of his children did as well. In one generation, my family was transformed from a family that had little interest in God to one that loved Him dearly and desired to serve Him.
It is not enough to merely talk about Jesus. We need to live the way He wants us to live but we also need to do things in His name.I cannot help but wonder how my life would have been different had these men not acted out their faith? Come to think of it... I doubt I would even exist!
So, what are you doing in Jesus' name? That is something to think about.
Western Christians are very good at talking the talk, yet if walking the walk involves giving money or time then in general we do not want to know. We are, in general, unwilling to roll up our sleeves and get stuck in.
Yet as I read the scriptures I read of men of God who spoke and acted.
I am so thankful that your Grandfather was in the keeping of a true man of faith... after all, what would we do without a little bit of K in our lives.