REALTORS® Scott and Meg Panella, Greater Louisville Association of REALTORS® members, arrived Friday night at their home airport in Kentucky with two additional members to their family, Job (7) and Innis (2) from Uganda. Several years ago, Meg and Scott felt a missing piece in their current family. While two amazing sons, Dominic (9) and Bennett (7), filled their home with laughter, love, and life, both knew a hole in their hearts would never fill until they made the trek to Africa to bring two new sons home.
On September 21st, 2013, the Panellas reached Jinja, Uganda after a three-day trek across the globe. Little did they know when they made this decision years ago, that the next six weeks would take them on a life-changing roller coaster ride with tears, challenges, and victories.
After interrogations, bouts with malaria, and even a person who told their youngest he was being taken to America to be eaten (yes, this happened), the Panellas boarded a plane for Kentucky the first day of the NAR conference in San Francisco.
Meg and Scott were greeted with a hero’s homecoming, including their REALTOR® friends from their office, Keller Williams Realty-East. Meg shared with her friends, wise insight throughout the experience. One of her most powerful statements was:
“Before I ever landed on Ugandan soil, I knew leaving would be hard for me. It’s probably very hard to understand unless you have ever been called so deeply by God that you know you are at home in his hands. I know it doesn’t make sense. Probably the question I get asked the most is, ‘Why don’t you adopt domestic?'”
“My response is always the same. Domestic adoption is a wonderful calling. I believe God has been calling me to Africa for several years. But if you feel passionate about American foster or orphaned children, then please listen to the whisper in your heart and go pray about it. I know we are so blessed. I feel so grateful for every single minute and success and heartbreak of this journey.”
The next step for Job and Innis Panella is American citizenship, but the bigger step is settling in to their new Kentucky home where food, water, and electricity are plentiful and love abounds.
While we miss Scott and Meg in San Francisco this year, our REALTOR® family celebrates this beautiful family from afar and wishes you our very best.
Scott is a board member of Metro Search Inc. (Louisville’s MLS) and is a member of the forms committee.