Jenny Marrs Recalls How God Worked Through Painful Adoption Journey

Photo from Dave Marrs’ Instagram

Jenny Marrs Recalls How God Worked Through Painful Adoption Journey

By Movieguide® Contributor 

HGTV star Jenny Marrs shared how a recent family trip to Bruges, Belgium recalled painful yet hopeful memories about their adoption process and thanked God they are “all together” now.

She wrote on Instagram, “We decided to end our ‘epic European vacation’ in Bruges. The travel day to get here was longer than I expected, and the logistics ended up being more complicated than I had planned. During our 12 hours of travel, I regretted the extra stop and considered just throwing up our hands and going home already.”

Then Marrs recalled the last time she and her husband were in Bruges after they had met their daughter Sylvie for the first time in the Congo. 

She added, “Then, just as the sky turned to dusk, we arrived. This city. I could weep at the full circle moment of being here again. Dave and I first visited years ago, broken and weary. We were on a long layover on our way home from visiting Sylvie in the Congo.

“My arms quite literally ached from where she had been ripped from them outside of the Kinshasa airport,” Marrs remembered. “My heart was shattered as I left her in a place where she wasn’t safe or healthy. And, my body physically broke down. I was so very sick. I questioned the long layover and just wanted to be home.”

Marrs concluded her post by sharing the hope she held on to at the time. 

She concluded, “Then, we arrived here. Here, we processed all we had experienced. Here, we ate and nourished our bodies and our souls. Here, we cried and we laughed. Here, I held on to Hope as I read this verse: ‘But God’s not finished. He’s waiting around to be gracious to you. He’s gathering strength to show mercy to you. God takes the time to do everything right -everything. Those who wait around for him are the lucky ones’ (Isaiah 30:18; The Message translation).

“We certainly are ‘the lucky ones.’ Here, once again. All together. We will explore the city these next few days. We will laugh and we will rest. Then, we will journey home, together,” she added. 

In a previous blog post, Marrs reflected on when she and her husband, Dave, left Sylvie for the first time. 

She wrote, “Sitting at dinner on our first night in Brugge, I couldn’t hold back the tears as we dreamed about what S was doing thousands of miles away as we sat there at a little table in a little cafe in a little town in Belgium. I felt the urge to look up through my tears, and I saw this rainbow. A sweet reminder that God will bring beauty out of this pain.”

She added, “All in all, it was a perfect weekend for our aching hearts. We were able to breathe deeply and grieve together before heading back to life at home without our daughter.”

Movieguide® previously reported: 

Sylvie, now 11, was adopted from the Democratic Republic of Congo. The process was supposed to take just six months, but it stretched into three years…

The couple met Sylvie and quickly decided to bring her back to America. 

“Her adoption had been finalized. She had her U.S. passport. And then the country shut down adopted kids leaving, so she couldn’t get her exit permit,” Jenny explained. “We were contacting anyone we thought could help us. We had people writing letters. We met with every one of our congressmen and senators.”

Dave traveled to the Congo five times, each time returning alone. 

“It was heart-wrenching,” he said of that time. “There was nothing we could do.”

During the long wait to bring Sylvie home, Jenny got pregnant again and gave birth to Charlotte, now 8. 

“I wasn’t able to really rejoice in the amazing news because we were so overwhelmed with sorrow that we couldn’t get our daughter home,” Jenny said. 

Just eight weeks later, the Marrs received the amazing news that Sylvie would finally be allowed to travel to the US.