About Us

Our Mission

Radically supporting families who take action on behalf of adopted and foster children

Our Vision

Envisioning a world where children grasp their preciousness and families are restored

Our History

Miriam's Heart is not just an adoption ministry.  We began out of the example of a small church located in a rural area in New Jersey. This church had what we like to call, 'a culture of adoption'. This radical 'culture' within this small church facilitated the adoptions & fostering of nearly 100 children! 

This caused Miriam's Heart founders, Jim & Elizabeth Occhipinti to seek God's heart for the church and His vision that we take action on behalf of the fatherless.  They asked themselves, "why do some churches just seem to get this and others do not?' Out of wrestling with God about this, they developed Miriam's Heart.

Jim & Elizabeth Occhipinti began to invite families into their home and the 'couch ministry' of Miriam's Heart began! Because of their willingness to share their story and create a safe environment -  a network of support - Miriam's Heart then became a local church ministry at Zarephath Christian Church. After functioning to serve the families of their local church, area church leaders and families began to attend their events and then the need to create Miriam's Heart, Inc. Since that time, Miriam's Heart functions as both a local ministry at Zarephath Christian Church, and also a separate 501C3, that networks with dozens of churches in the northeast.  Our goal is to create a coalition of churches, families and organizations in the northeast that collaborate to take action on behalf of orphaned and abandoned children.

Purpose Statement

People ask us all the time, What is Miriam's Heart? We like to say that we created what we didn't have when we adopted. We developed Miriam’s Heart to build an environment we call-a “culture of adoption” - that celebrates and supports the full spectrum of adoption. We work to create a support network between families, agencies, organizations and churches. We edify with the truth about vulnerable children and families, create opportunities for meaningful gatherings, mentor and train adoptive and foster parents (and their children). We provide funding toward adoption costs and post-placement counseling expenses. We mobilize the church and communities to rally alongside adoptive and foster families. In this way, Miriam’s Heart envisions a world where children grasp their preciousness and families are restored by radically supporting families who take action on behalf of orphaned and abandoned children. 

Core Principles


Partner with trusted organizations


Raise awareness 


Provide opportunities for connection and community


Creating a 'culture of adoption' 


Radically support families 

Our Roots

Just like Moses' sister Miriam, our ministry seeks to facilitate adoptions and concerns itself with the children, birth parents and adoptive parents.God used Miriam's wise, brave and tender heart to facilitate the first recorded adoption. When it wasn't possible for this family to stay together, Miriam helped to find solutions for the child, the birth mother and the adoptive mother. 

We earnestly seek this same heart in our work.