Our nation seems more divided now than ever. Politically. Spiritually. Economically. Morally. Yet, over these last few months, I have seen Kentucky Baptists unite in an impactful way to care for hurting children and families in our commonwealth.
As Sunrise Children’s Services found itself in the middle of a contract dispute with the state, it quickly became apparent that we were not in this battle alone. As we took a stand to hold true to our long-standing values and beliefs in caring for abused, neglected and abandoned children, thousands of Kentucky Baptists stood with us to join in this fight.
Many of you helped us fight for children living in this commonwealth — ranked No. 1 in child abuse for the third straight year. Baptists joined together to help fight for the nearly 10,000 children in Kentucky alone who have been removed from their homes in order to keep them safe and protected. Thousands of Kentuckians stood up to help us fight for more than 700 individuals in our care who need hope and healing.
Kentucky Baptists joined us in our fight for the lives of vulnerable children with their prayers, finances and even phone calls. We were told that the volume of phone calls to the Kentucky governor’s office in support of Sunrise was so high that they were unable to accept all the calls!
We are incredibly thankful for the prayers and support from thousands of Kentuckians. It has been amazing to hear from so many that care deeply about this ministry. We have had many friends across the state who have stood up and shown their support for Sunrise. Churches and individuals who had never given to Sunrise are now giving. Those who had been faithful supporters are now giving even more. This summer saw a dramatic increase in VBS mission offerings designated to Sunrise. All of this made a difference.
Hurting families need to know there is hope for them. For Sunrise, having the freedom to have that gospel conversation with these families can be life-changing. This is a First Amendment right, and Kentucky Baptists should never be told that right is not needed.
Please remain as united Baptists for the sake of Kentucky’s children. Please continue praying for our ministries, taking time to celebrate God’s favor as He has been beside us every step of the way. And please continue giving financially to Sunrise. Your generous offerings have a tremendous impact on our ministry and on the lives of Kentucky’s most needy children.
Dale Suttles is president of Sunrise Children’s Services.