It started with a twelve year dream of Dr. Ken Hutcherson, founding Pastor of Antioch Bible Church in Kirkland, Washington. He desired to see all children from the Foster Care system adopted into loving families. He also desired for more families to be able to afford infant adoptions.
Dr. Hutcherson said, "We took $20,000 cash just as Jesus did with minas in the parable of Luke, and had it at the church meeting in May of 1998. I spoke from the Book of Matthew on talents and told the congregation, 'everyone here is going to get cash from us today'."
A total of $16,000 was dispersed to the 1,500-1,600 in attendance, and the parable of multiplying talents was explored. By the end of the service the congregation knew what was expected. Everyone ranging in age from 5 to 17 were given a crisp $5 bill. Those 18 and older were given a $10 bill.
"We want you to keep this money for 6 months, mix it with your God-given talent and we're going to take it up on Jesus' birthday as we celebrate in December," Hutcherson concluded.
"Just as it happened in scripture though, some people pooled their money to invest it, some buried it, and some saved it. But the majority took that seed money and invested it in different, creative ways."
There were so many creative ways that people participating in this challenge. One mother wanted to involve her children, knowing they would learn more by doing than by example. Her seven year-old daughter gave manicures for $1 each, her four year-old son drew portraits of people for a quarter (he even included a goatee for no extra charge!). Another group banded together and wrote "Amazing Recipes that Stir the Heart & Soul", a spiral bound cookbook showcasing favorite family recipes while addressing spiritual needs in practical ways.
By adding God-given talents to seed money for six months, the initial amount increased in excess of 1,750% or 17.5 times, for a total of $280,000 collected. Those funds provided the start-up money for Antioch Adoptions. Now, 16 years later, we're radically changing the face of adoption as we continue to remove barriers, whatever they may be, and make adoption a land easily traversed by both adoptive and birth-parents for the sake of children in need.
Dr. Ken Hutcherson
July 14, 1952 to December 18, 2013
Pastor Hutch was a man who stood boldly for His Savior. It was this bold obedience to God's calling that brought Pastor Hutch to start Antioch Adoptions in 2000. Through grass roots efforts and lobbying on a state level, Pastor Hutch made an impact on adoption in the state of Washington that has caused people all over the nation to stand up and take note.
All who partner with this ministry are privileged to continue the good work he started. His legacy will continue to live on through this ministry and through every child and family who are blessed because of it.