Episode #2: Interview with Elizabeth Occhipinti, Co-Founder/President of Miriam’s Heart

Interview with Elizabeth Occhipinti, Co-Founder and President of Miriam’s Heart.  Elizabeth, her husband Jimmy and their five children reside in Somerset, New Jersey.  Elizabeth and Jimmy started Miriam’s Heart in May 2011 as an adoption and foster care resource ministry to churches and individuals.  What began as an outreach at her local church, Zarephath Christian Church, has now flourished to help other families and churches throughout the northeast in the area of orphan care and adoption.  In addition to running Miriam’s Heart, Elizabeth has recently been named the Orphan Sunday Regional Coordinator for the Northeast Region through Christian Alliance for Orphans.



In this episode…

  1. What is Miriam’s Heart
  2. Annual Miriam’s Heart Regional Conference
  3. How to start an orphan care ministry in your church
Websites mentioned in this podcast:
Miriam’s Heart
Miriam’s Heart Regional Conference
Christian Alliance for Orphans
Zarephath Christian Church in New Jersery

Episode #1: Welcome to Joy for the Journey Ministries

Episode #1:  Welcome to Joy for the Journey Ministries

In this first weekly podcast, Cheryl Carter and Pam Andrews, Founders of Joy for the Journey Ministries talk about the ministry, their vision and the resources available to adoptive, pre-adoptive and foster moms through Joy for the Journey Ministries and Joy for the Journey Retreats.

In this episode…

  1. What is Joy for the Journey Ministries
  2. What are the online resources through the ministry
  3. Learn about our upcoming retreat for adoptive moms


 Websites mentioned in this podcast:

Joy for the Journey Ministries

Joy for the Journey Retreats for Adoptive Moms

Diary of An Adoptive Dad

Boy Holding Dad's hand

Today was a very good day!  I am an adoptive dad.  Our family is in the process of adopting 4 boys (two sets of twins, 3 and 8 year old’s).  The boys will be coming to us this June.  We have been visiting with the boys in their home state up until today.  Today was the first visit in our state. It was great to have them with us in our home.  I think they were very excited also to see where they are going to live.  This is going to be a short visit as they arrived this afternoon and will be leaving tomorrow afternoon.  However, I am already seeing the family bond together.  Our older kids really came together to prepare the boy’s room and get the house together.  Janae and Jolene sacrificially gave up their individual bedrooms and are now sharing a bedroom (when Janae is home from college) so that the boys can have their own bedroom.  My mother came over to meet her new grandchildren and is now preparing four Easter baskets for next week. After grandma left we all went to the park and played basketball and played in the playground area, even Cheryl took a few turns on the slide.  When we got home Jarrett took the lead in preparing tonight’s dinner with the assistance of his new brothers.  Everyone helped clean up after dinner and there was still time for Janae and Jolene to teach their new brothers ballroom dancing.  As the night moved on and the little ones were bathed and prepared for bed, I was given a forgotten treat.  Hugs and kisses and “good night daddy” from little ones with small voices.  As I sit back now in front of the fireplace I can’t believe how blessed I am.  Yes…today was a very good day!!

CartersDerek Carter is the President of Foundations for Family Success, a ministry which serves today’s fast paced families. He is a Clinical Member of the National Association of Christian Counselors.  He has worked with families in crisis for over fifteen years and has a degree in Urban Studies and a Masters of Science in Urban Policy and Administration.  He is the father to three biological children (ages 22, 19 and 16) and in the process of adopting two sets of twins (ages 8 and 3).  He has been married to Cheryl, the love of his life for over twenty years.