From Merriam-Webster, orphan is defined as:
1 : a child deprived by death of one or usually both parents
2 : a young animal that has lost its mother
3 : one deprived of some protection or advantage
4 : a first line (as of a paragraph) separated from its related text and appearing at the bottom of a printed page or column
What screamed out at me from this is that in general, it truly is a separation. Many times children are 'orphaned' by parents who are still alive, but are unable to care for them for whatever reason. (I wonder if there is a term one would use for the parents - I cannot imagine a more heart-breaking situation than knowing that it is impossible to care for one's own children.)
And I think of orphans as having separation from protection. I've blogged about that one before. Makes me ill to think about.
There are literally millions of orphans in Ethiopia.
There are an estimated 1.5 million orphans in Afghanistan.
Approximately 650 000 orphans in Russia. And those numbers are just the beginning.
What can we do about this? How can I help? How can you help?
Where am I going with this? I really don't know.
Just sharing what's on my heart and my frustrating search for answers.
Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you.
James 1:27 NLT