Friends, I am putting out an urgent plea for help.
Rusty and Summer Page are longtime friends of ours and a precious family in our church. When Rich and I were first married, we met Rusty as a small boy as we attended Bible Study in his parents' home. After Rusty and Summer married we continued that relationship. Over the years we have been blessed to have spent some time with them both in our home and theirs and have always been blessed by their sweet family. Recently as the director for The Master's Kids, our church's mommy-and-me preschool program, I got to have Summer, Lexi and her brother Caleb in the program. Summer was a patient and loving mama with them, and I have always highly admired their family and approach to parenting.
Yesterday, their 6 year-old foster daughter of over 4 years, Lexi, was abruptly removed from their home because the Pages lost a years-long court battle for the right to adopt her. The Pages have taken her into their own home, provided her with the only mommy and daddy and siblings she has ever known. They have provided not only stability and love but have FOUGHT HARD to adopt her. It is very complicated, but Lexi is 1/64th (1.5%) Choctaw Indian by descent, which gives the Choctaw tribe in Oklahoma the right to dictate where she lives. They chose to place her with a distant relative of Lexi's birth father (both her birth parents have long given up their rights). These relatives are not blood related OR even of Indian descent, and she will not be raised in the Indian culture. This is a terrible abuse of the intent of the Indian Child Welfare Act which eventually culminated in DCFS (Department of Children Family Services) coming to the Page's home yesterday with no designated appointment time. Within about 10 minutes flat, 3 strangers removed a crying and distressed little child and drove away. I can't think of anything that I've ever seen personally that has been more devastating than that. How I wish I hadn't seen it. It keeps playing over and over in my head. It was beyond heart wrenching and a very rude reminder of the evil in this world.
We as a church body, along with members of the community set up a peaceful demonstration at a corner near the Page's Santa Clarita home starting Sunday morning. Groups gathered with their families to pray and sing hymns, and to stand with and encourage the Pages and one another. It was a blessed time to bond together and focus on the truths of God that we know - He is sovereign and good no matter what. He loves Lexi more than we do. He knows what is best. His plans won't be thwarted by evil men. He has promised "in this world we will have trouble" but that He will one day rescue us from it. Prayers were heartfelt and desperate as we depended on God's grace and mercy to protect Lexi and comfort our breaking hearts.
That said, I want to enlist as much help for the Pages that I can using the platform of my blog. Please take a moment of your time to sign the petition below and PLEASE SHARE. The Pages know this is not just about Lexi but the hundreds of children that are victims of this abuse of power. Please help BRING LEXI HOME.
Here is the petition:
Also, please follow along on these Facebook Page for updates and to see what you can do to help.
This is a most thoughtful and accurate letter written by Matt Hand, Rusty's brother in law: