After a week off, the latest Mere Fidelity podcast has just gone online. This week we are discussing what adoption is and isn’t, both within Scripture and in society today. We take our starting point in the following quotation from page 40 of Oliver O’Donovan’s Begotten or Made?
Adoption is not procreation, and does not fulfil the procreative good of marriage. It is a charitable vocation indicated to childless couples by the personal tragedy of their deprivation in this area. And although it may richly compensate for the sorrow and satisfy the desire to nurture and educate children, it is still a substitute for procreation rather than a form of procreation. This is not to belittle or demean the adoptive relationship. Indeed, it might be said to praise it on altogether a higher level, inasmuch as it points beyond the natural goods of marriage to the supernatural good of charity. But adoption cannot be taken as a precedent for interpreting procreation as a simple enterprise of the will.