When Katie Davis moved from the United States to Uganda, the experience opened her eyes to the good she could do. And so she began taking in orphans – until she’d eventually adopted a total of 13 daughters. Then, when family life was running smoothly, Katie introduced her girls to their new father.
When Katie had been a teenager, however, she had wanted a piece of the typical American dream. It had been her desire to settle down in a big house with a white picket fence; she had also wanted to complete that picture by having a couple of kids.
However, little did Katie know that a journey she would take in 2006 would change her life forever. When she was just 18 years old, she had embarked on a mission trip to Uganda. And the country had had such an impact on her that she decided not to go to college.
Instead, Katie deferred her studies for a year. Then, after finishing high school, she subsequently found work with a pastor who ran a Ugandan orphanage. He had been in the midst of setting up a school in the country, and he in turn asked Katie if she would come and teach the kindergarten students.
What’s more, while Katie was volunteering in Uganda, she fell ever more in love with the nation and its culture. The young missionary was particularly enamored with the people she met on her visit. And in 2008 she was sufficiently inspired to set up Amazima Ministries – an organization that aims to help Ugandan citizens “to live out the love of Jesus.”
Amazima Ministries also runs a sponsorship program for disadvantaged children that provides money for school and food. That way, some kids could afford to remain at home with their loved ones rather than ending up in an orphanage.
Through her work, Katie had discovered that many children in the orphanage had families. However, due to financial pressures, a number of parents had had to give their kids up. By doing so, at least they knew that their children would be fed and sheltered.
While speaking to Christian Broadcasting Network show The 700 Club in October 2017, Katie revealed, “I was so broken by that [situation]. That women and men would have to give up their children just to know that they would eat, or that they would go to school.”
Katie was so moved by the orphans’ plight, in fact, that she decided to take matters into her own hands. Indeed, she did that quite literally by agreeing to foster three girls for a short period. However, when suitable families couldn’t be found for the children, Katie then decided to adopt them.
And, as it turned out, the adoptions marked the start of a new vocation for Katie. It was a pursuit that she threw herself into, too, since by the time she was 23, she had 13 young children in her care. Now, her family was bigger than she could have presumably ever imagined.
As a busy mother, then, dating probably wasn’t Katie’s highest priority. She had a huge brood to take care of all by herself, after all. But she would find love nonetheless, when her future husband, Benji Majors, walked into her life.
And in a remarkable twist of fate, it turned out that Benji and Katie had both grown up in Franklin, Tennessee – although the two had previously never met. “We shared a hometown with only a few hilltops to keep our adolescent lives from ever intersecting,” Katie revealed on her blog in 2015.
Indeed, it wasn’t until Benji moved to Uganda that his and Katie’s paths finally crossed. However, for Katie, their meeting wasn’t quite love at first sight – and she simply wasn’t on the market for a new man, either. “I kind of felt like I had kind of put that dream aside,” she explained to The 700 Club.
But after a while, Katie decided to give Benji a chance, and the pair began a relationship. Then, after having dated for a year, the couple decided to tie the knot – with Katie’s 13 daughters acting as bridesmaids.
Finally, then, Katie had someone to share her ready-made family with. Before her romance with Benji, however, she had never believed that she’d meet a man willing to take on her and her 13 adopted children. Indeed, during an appearance on The World Over in October 2017, Katie spoke of how she’d thought, “‘It would be nice to be married, but I guess it’s not on the cards for me.’”
And even though Katie had found her husband, he in turn didn’t find it easy at first to slot into a family of 14 women. Benji would explain to The Archibald Project, “There was always a nervousness for me at the beginning. Kind of like, ‘Was that wise parenting advice?’
However, Benji eventually got used to the situation in which he had found himself. “I’ve been blessed by it, I think we’ve been blessed by it,” he said. “I had some confidence as a single guy, and then the Lord just said, ‘No. I’m going to break you down in some incredible ways.’”
Meanwhile, the girls themselves all reacted differently to the new male presence in their lives. “It’s a work in progress, but some of them from day one were just like, ‘Dad!’” Benji revealed to The Archibald Project. “Some of them had love and kindness from day one, but that word ‘dad’ didn’t really come off their lips.”
Benji continued to work at his relationships with his new daughters, however. And as the months passed, he settled into his new fatherly role. “He rejoices over me and over each one of our daughters,” Katie would gush on her blog in 2015. She added, “I watch them come alive under the loving gaze of their new father. I hear the delight and the certainty in their voices as they call, ‘Dad.’”
But as is so often the case, the couple’s story didn’t end at their marriage. That’s because in 2016 Katie and Benji expanded their brood once more when they welcomed their biological son, Noah. And while the couple haven’t ruled out adopting in the future, for now they’re apparently content as a family of 16.