Chris Tomlin promotes foster care, adoption during tour
MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - Grammy-award winning Christian musician Chris Tomlin rocked out Thursday night at FedExForum with his "Worship Night in America" tour.
But before Tomlin hit the stage, he met with a much smaller crowd to encourage them to help out with a cause that is close to his heart.
Tomlin is playing 24 cities across the country, and in every city, he's bringing awareness to the 400,000 kids in the U.S. foster care system.
In Shelby County alone, there are more than 900 kids that are looking for foster families or looking to be adopted.
"There's a crisis right now, there are not enough foster homes especially for teens and large sibling sets," said Kristin Allender, executive director of TN Kids Belong.
That's where the Tennessee chapter of America's Kids Belong comes in.
It's a non-profit that raises awareness about foster care and produces videos so people all over the state can meet these kids, and they've just gained a great ally in Tomlin.
"So, I had this thought what if in every city we go to on this tour called 'Worship Night in America,'" Tomlin said. "What if we work for 'America's Kids Belong,' they are doing wonderful things."
So, before Tomlin sang one note, he brought together church and community leaders to learn how they can work together to encourage more Memphis families to open up their homes.
"I just told my husband the other night, I said, 'can you believe we're doing this?' and he said no, but the Lord just put that on our hearts," said foster parent Ashley Anthony.
After attending a Safe Families meeting at Bellevue Baptist Church, Anthony and her husband decided to take in a child whose mom didn't want to give up her parental rights.
"So, his mom was in a situation where she needed to get a job and wanted to go to college and needed to get a home, so we're just helping her out until she can get on her feet," Anthony said.
Tomlin's two brothers just recently became foster parents, and he believes everyone can play a part to solve this problem.
"Not all of us are called to bring in kids or become foster parents or adopt, but all of us are called to care and we can all do something," Tomlin said.
Tomlin dedicated all of the proceeds from his Good Friday performance in Nashville to America's Kids Belong.
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