It all started with a speech...
By Ryan Bomberger, cofounder of The Radiance Foundation
It’s funny how we think an action we engage in is for one reason, but God’s plan included so much more. It’s how I feel about this Adopted & Loved story. Tanner and Angela are the very first ones to receive The Henry & Andrea Bomberger Adopted & Loved Fund.
It all started when I was on Facebook and saw a speech made by a teacher at a Loudoun County school board meeting. Tanner Cross was one of a tiny handful of teachers (three to be exact) whose souls were so disturbed by recent radical policies passed by the far-left school board. So, he had to share his heart.
He told the school board and the many like-minded Loudoun County residents gathered that “he loved his students too much to call a boy a girl and a girl a boy.” He explained that “we’re made in the Holy image of God”, and his faith would not allow him to lie to children. His tone was so gracious but his conviction was firm. As I wrote in a national OpEd, he was put on “administrative leave” the next day by the school, but his job was reinstated by both a state judge and the Virginia Supreme Court.
How could a school turn on one of its beloved teachers? This is what happens when Big Education’s agenda doesn’t include what’s best for children.
That led me to want to find out more about this bold and compassionate Christian. I eventually found his wife’s Facebook page and began reading about their near decade-long struggle to be parents. They work in jobs with children; Tanner is a physical education teacher, and Angela runs a daycare out of their beautiful home. They’ve tried so many routes to parenthood but met heartbreak each time. Several foster-to-adoption situations failed, one because of racist positions from social workers (disallowing black and brown children from being adopted by white parents) and another because of Tanner’s principled stand in that school board meeting!
We did some vetting and knew they were the ones. Their love for the Lord is evident in everything they say and do.
I’ll never forget when we called and announced that they would be the first recipients of our new fund. There was so much crying on both sides of the phones. I mean, a lot of crying…and rejoicing! In the midst of insane attacks on them, God had connected their story to ours, and we were able to play a small role in the miracle He had already planned!
In February of this year, that precious miracle was born! His name is Josiah. Like me, he is both black and white. And they love him beyond words! He is the answer to so many of Tanner’s and Angela’s prayers soaked in years of tears.
In May, the adoption was finalized, and Josiah officially became Josiah Cross! The Cross family, and their extended family, rejoiced with them and loves that baby boy. Each year Tanner and Angela would return to the spot where they were married. On the tenth anniversary of their wedding, that picture included the son they’ve longed for.
We give God all the credit and praise for this Adopted & Loved story. Thank you to everyone who donated, who prayed, and who supported Tanner and Angela in so many different ways. Hope is never in vain.