10 Years of Tapestry – Matt & Kristin Donovan

By: - May 5, 2015

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The Donovan Family

We are celebrating 10 years of ministry this year at Tapestry. In the build-up to our official celebration in September, we want to highlight 10 people/couples that helped to make Tapestry what it has become.  These are the people that have enabled us to connect with, encourage, and equip literally thousands of families over the past decade.

Meet Matt and Kristin Donovan. Although the Donovans now live in California, their influence on Tapestry can be seen every day. Matt is a designer and a thinker as well as a husband and a father, and over the years he has shared his many talents to help create the “look” and “feel” of Tapestry.  From our logo to our websites and much more, Matt was instrumental in helping create virtually everything that you “see” in terms of Tapestry.  Meanwhile, Kristin was equally influential in our development.  Through her consistent presence, compassion, and often understated insights, Kristin helped us develop an outreach to and a community among adoptive and foster moms, particularly in the early years.

The funny thing is that Matt and Kristin never sought to make their mark on Tapestry or to help us “build” the ministry.  Instead, they simply desired to be connected with others, to share their gifts and abilities, and to see a local church ministry reach out to connect, equip, and encourage others along the way.

We are grateful to Matt and Kristin for all they have done to invest in Tapestry.  Here are their thoughts about Tapestry and what it has meant to them.

1. How long have you been connected to or involved with Tapestry? How did your involvement begin?

Kristin first heard about Tapestry nearly nine years ago through a friend who was a foster parent. As we begun the process to become foster parents ourselves, we attended one of the first Tapestry conferences. I believe it was on a Saturday or Sunday evening and there were just a handful of breakout sessions. The whole thing was maybe 2 hours long.

From there, we checked out the waiting families group and, for us, this was a sustaining force as we waited for placement. It was also the beginning of some of the most important friendships we’ve ever had.

For me (Matt), in particular, the chance to hear from and talk with other guys who had gone ahead of me on this journey a bit was life-giving. Without our waiting families group, I don’t know if we would have made it to adoption.

2. How have you seen Tapestry influence and impact the lives of families, both parents and children?

Most families start out the adoption or foster care journey with some variable mixture of excitement, self-reliance, and trepidation. Maybe even some terror.

I’ve seen Tapestry systematically help assess and re-calibrate parent’s motivations and expectations through seriously top-notch education. I’ve also seen Tapestry compassionately shepherd hundreds of parents (and their children) through the joy and grief that are inherent in the lives of adoptive families.

3. How has Tapestry impacted your life? What have you learned as a result of your involvement with Tapestry?

  • I’ve learned that my frustration with my kids behaviors has about 1000x more to do with my own expectations and sin than with theirs.
  • I’ve learned kindness, more than anything, is what leads to repentance.
  • I’ve learned that taking the time to connect with my kids results in having to correct them a whole lot less.
  • I’ve learned that talking about motivations and expectations with a couple considering adoption is one of the most important conversations you can have. It pays dividends in their lives, their kids lives, their parents lives, probably even in their grandkids lives.
  • I’ve learned that bystanders are jaw-to-the-floor-amazed when a three-year-old says “can I have a compromise?”
  • I’ve learned that family really is more than blood. Like, really really.

4. What do you love, appreciate, or admire most about Tapestry?

They’ll hate me for saying this, but Michael and Amy Monroe are who I love, appreciate and admire most about Tapestry. They are quite possibly the hardest working, most judiciously trusting, unstoppably caring, rigorously well-grounded leaders I have ever served with.

5. What is most unique about Tapestry?

Hands down the most unique thing about Tapestry is the ministry’s commitment to practical help. Tapestry is relentless in its pursuit of real change in the lives of the families it serves and it is unapologetic in it’s combined employment of theology, science, community, and grit.

6. Tapestry is…

… the ministry that helped us adopt our daughter; the community that helps us still parent all our children.

Also Found In: 10 Years of Tapestry, Tapestry Blog

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