Mom and Dad Dorsett chose to live their lives differently.
They swam upstream, not defiantly, but as propelled by their faith, principles, priorities and love. Their choices were not always understood or appreciated, but they kept swimming and humbly sought to bring others along with them.
Mom and Dad sought relationships with the broken, oppressed and at-risk; the poor, downtrodden and detached.
For 35 years, Ed and Lois Dorsett were international “missionaries," all from their humble home next to Wichita State University. They were and still are referred to as “Mom and Dad” by many of the approximately 1,000 international students who considered Dad and Mom’s home theirs.
In later years, Dad and Mom had ample resources to move into any upscale neighborhood, but chose to remain in their humble home near the university in order to continue ministering to international students.
They were sacrificially generous in the time and money they invested. They taught many English, others driver’s education, others how to cook, and took others on day trips around Kansas – always involving them in every possible intersect of life. They were student visa and immigration advocates for decades.
Dad and Mom deeply loved the young people of the world who came to Wichita to study, and many came to Christ as the the truth of the Gospel was lived, shared and explained. Generations that followed are told the stories of “Mom and Dad," and many, many of those have followed in faith.
My parents’ lives were so remarkably unusual that they shaped us children profoundly. Our whole family (and that is a very inclusive term for us) has been richly blessed and influenced by their ministry. All of us are “international citizens” because of the lives lived before us. My parents were pivotal blessings of God’s providence.
Mom and Dad were not sinless, but they lived with selfless and focused purpose.
They were never paid a dollar for their ministry. But within a block of Wichita State University, they loved many into the Kingdom. Generational seeds have been planted around the world from their “Beachhead for Christ” on Harvard Street, seeds that are still bearing great fruit, even two generations later.
As you think of those within your community who could use a friend, ask God how He might want to use you to welcome in strangers, make them friends, and love them to Jesus.