Tuesday, December 1, 2009
"small" miracles... and next steps
NOTE: For those that plan to join me in this Ethiopian Adventure, we will not have a confirmed travel date for possibly 6-8 weeks - but it looks like a POSSIBLE February or March travel time.
Feel free to contact me with any additional questions
As you are aware, Ashebir's paperwork as of today, has been processed through court.
This week, the court will draft a letter to the Ethiopian Minisistry of Women's Affairs (MOWA) -Since all Ethiopian Adoptions are managed by them after the legal proceedings are complete. That letter communicates the court's approval to proceed with the Ashebir's adoption.
When MOWA recieves that letter from the Court, (in about a week or so) MOWA will review the information to verify it, and send a letter to CHSFS (our agency) to proceed with the adoption to OUR specific family.
That letter (could take another 1-2 weeks) will provide CHSFS the authorization needed to apply for Ashebir's "Zipf Birth Certificate", and begin the process for the US Embassy to approve the Birth Cert to create Ashebir's passport and visa. Before the Birth Cert is issued however, a final medical exam is required by the US Embassy. This is to ensure adopted children are healthy before they enter the US.
Therefore, we will not get a travel date until after the Birth Cert is confirmed. NOTE: Occiasionally the Medical Exam takes a little longer, and until the final Medical Exam is confirmed by the Embassy, we will not be able to enter the US. It's not likely, but it's possible that last minit travel plans would need to be adjusted if the medical exam results aren't complete in time.
At this point, we are still estimating a Feb or March travel time. We are looking forward to how this Expedition could change many lives!
For those of you not already aware, we are beginning to put together the remaining details to coordinate this adoption adventure with a "Vision Trip" - to meet up with a few mission and development organizations to investigate where we can invest long term to do our part to help end the causes and effects of poverty in Ethiopia.
We'll be in Ethiopia for two weeks total. The second week our time will primarily be finishing the remaining details to bring Ashebir home, but the first week our team will be spending with 3 organizations that share the heart we do for Ethiopia, and are making an increidible difference in hundreds of families there. For part of a day, we'll visit the children at the care center and offices of AHOPE for Children in down town Addis. We'll be bringing medical supplies with us that our church is collecting from now until the end of December. Another partial day will be spend visiting the CURE International Hospital and learning about their work as well.
The majority of our first week will be traveling and spending time with Food For the Hungry to an area where our church may begin investing in, to work in cooperation with a local church there. While there, we will learn about potential projects we may partner with FH and the church to assist in areas of need including, but not limited to: Leadership development, "brick and mortar" projects, micro-business, teaching Bible to children, agricultural development, health and wellness teaching, and other projects depending on the needs of that given community.
To sum up, we're still about 6 weeks from a Birth certificate and travel date, but stay tuned...
Finally, for those of you that pray, here are a few things to consider in your time alone with God in the days and weeks ahead...
1. We've recently learned that some of the delay these last few weeks was partly attributed to locating Ashebir's Uncle, then confirming his ID, and getting an official statement from him. So, he was in court today and his testimony and documents were a major part of the court's approval. The details that came together for this part of the process was miraculous.
2. We are so incredibly thankful for all the staff at CHSFS and their tireless efforts to protect and provide for some of the most helpless children of the world - they have done and are doing a great job, especially considering that so much is beyond their control when they are depending on other governments processes.
3. There are several families waiting - just like us -due to the backlog at the US Embassy created by the necessary Gov't organizations involved and paperwork they are processing
4. This week (12/1-12/8) Staff from the US Office of CHSFS are traveling to Ethiopia to meet with the Embassy officials to ask alloting more appointments to process additional children per month - this will open up the "backlog" for us, and many other waiting children heading to loving families! We expect these meetings to take place Wed, Thur or Friday.
5. We're putting together the plans now to coordinate this trip - there are still many variables - but we are excited about who has already committed to going, and look forward to the rest of "the team" that God is assembling.
The adventure continues.