David Springer became involved in foster care before his turn toward Christianity as a self-described “pagan progressive” in Chicago, IL (the term, he says, describes someone who wants the Kingdom but not the King). “It was during this very difficult time, as my then-wife and I tried to navigate our way through cross-cultural and multi-racial placements of children who were affected by trauma with no framework for understanding them, no assistance from a system that had no time for difficulties, and no faith or sense of a larger story that we were participating in, that I began to recognize my own privilege, the pervasiveness of subtle and not-so-subtle racism, and the loneliness arising from a lack of an understanding community. Our marriage fell apart as a result of the overwhelming weight of the problems.”
A move to Portland following his divorce brought him not only into a relationship with Jesus but also with Imago Dei Community, Multnomah University and its Institute for the Theology of Culture: New Wine, New Wineskins, and Krys Springer and her foster daughter Paige. Not long after their adoption was finalized, David and Krys were married in a ceremony highlighting the adoption themes in Paul’s New Testament letters and David took Krys’ and Paige’s new name in celebration of their adopting each other.
Krys’ understanding of the developmental impact of trauma and her heart for children in the foster care system has been a great connector in her and David’s relationship. Moreover, as they have continued this work together, they have come to understand the importance of recognizing God’s authorship and handiwork in these stories and the necessity of community as they interact with both birth families, case workers and other state employees as well as foster/adoptive families.
David has a Masters of Arts in Teaching and is currently pursuing a Doctorate in Cultural Engagement at Multnomah University. Krys has a Masters of Arts in Counseling Psychology from Lewis and Clark College.