Seeking information from the past.

A service for those adopted through Catholic Charities or Christ Child Home.

Family researching adoption.

When Catholic Charities was established in Des Moines in the 1920’s, one of it’s main components was Christ Child Home. The facility was a temporary home for neglected, abandoned, and orphaned children. From 1925-1966, the home was run by Catholic nuns who cared for more than 3,000 children. During its history, 1,039 of the children were placed for adoption through Christ Child Home. Adoptions continued through Catholic Charities into the 2010’s. Catholic Charities, Diocese of Des Moines remains dedicated to maintaining the records of all those placed for adoption throughout its history.

Who can request an adoption search?

  • Adoptees
  • Birthparents
  • Siblings
  • Relatives of Birthparents

Criteria for Search:

  • Must be 21 years of age (all parties)
  • Adoption must have been through the Christ Child Home/Catholic Charities, Diocese of Des Moines or Catholic Council for Social Concern
  • Must be willing to participate in a one hour preparation session prior to the search

Search Services:

  • Updating file (no fee)
  • Medical & Background Information ($50.00 fee) – This is non-identifying information would include: medical and social history, birth parents’ ages at the time of the adoption, physical descriptions, educational background, occupations, religious and ethnic backgrounds, marital status,  and relatives. No identifying information such as names, date of birth, addresses, cities, states, school names, or church names are revealed.
  • Filing an affidavit (no fee)
  • Intermediary Services ($100.00 fee)
  • Search ($350.00 fee)

Call Catholic Charities at 515-244-3761 to request an adoption search.

More information about adoption in Iowa can be found at