Tuesday, April 13

The Stages of Int'l Adoption Paperwork & Prayer Request

The paperwork stage of our international adoption is divided into 4 parts. I wanted to share so you know where we are at. I will try to explain in non adoption language to make it easy to understand.

The first part is the application process which we have completed. This is where you fill out the agency's application, get 4 letters of reference, and sign all kinds of agreements. We have already done this.

Upon completion of each paperwork stage, a fee is due. Read here if you missed hearing how God provided the fees for this stage.

The 2nd part is the homestudy. Many documents are required to even begin the homestudy process: autobiographies, answers to questionnaires, medical forms filled out by doctors, birth certificates, marriage certificate, employment verification letters, county and state background checks, 10 hours of online adoptive family training.

The social worker takes all these documents and the info she gathers in her meetings with you and creates a homestudy that is submitted to the adoption agency AND to Homeland Security, the US Citizenship & Immigration office. A fee is due at this time too. . and I gotta do a post soon on how God provided that. :)

Once we have the homestudy, we can move to the 3rd stage which is applying for "advance processing of orphan petition". You fill out a form, include the homestudy, and copies of birth certificates and marriage certificates and send it off to Homeland Security. They in turn tell you a date of when you can come in and get your fingerprints done.

We will go to Durham to get these fingerprints taken. We will then wait for them to mail us approval. . the I-171H form. . that is what we want, this goes to Ethiopia with us. It is also what is needed to complete the 4th stage of the paperwork: the dossier (go here to hear how you say that word).

The dossier is this huge stack of documents: the I-171H form, homestudy, medical forms, employment verications, bank letters, copy of tax returns, birth certificates, marriage certificate, copy of passports, family photos, reference letters, police clearances. .all notarized and sent off to the adoption agency who in turns sends it to Ethiopia for authentication by their government.

At this point are you able to receive a referral of your child.

And here is where we are at and what we need prayer for:

So we are waiting for our homestudy. . all documents have been given and all meetings have been conducted. . we just need the hard copy of our homestudy in our hands to move forward.

Will you pray with us that we would get this homestudy this week? We have been waiting quite a while, a lot longer than we were told it would take.

I do not think we are necessary in a hurry. . .as we trust God is orchestrating the coming together of us and our son just perfectly. . but we would just like to continue to move forward. . we would like to check this off our "to-do" list. . we would like to free up a little "brain energy". We sure would appreciate prayers for this homestudy to get done and in our hands.

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