In our last post, we told you that we were finished with our homestudy. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case at the time. We can now say with certainty that we have finished the homestudy and sent it off to the USCIS (United States Citizenship and Immigration Services)! What this means for us is that our first major step is complete. The way we look at it, prior to our first trip to Russia, there are three major steps to go through:
2. Approval by the USCIS. The form (I-600A) states that it could take between 60 and 90 days, but we have heard that they’re being processed in about 30 days.
3. Sending dossier to Russia. This is a huge packet of information, including our homestudy and lots of personal documents.
The same day we finished our homestudy, we found out that one of the two Russian families that expressed interest in Maria back in February contacted the orphanage again and let them know they expect to have their paperwork ready in May. We think the family was planning to visit Maria sometime last week, so we are hoping to hear more about that this week. It sounds like this family is a foster family, so the orphanage director may be more interested in placing Maria in a permanent home. We are continuing to pray that God will work all of this out for his glory and for Maria’s best.
As far as our timing goes, we hope to have our paperwork ready mid to late May. That would be contingent upon getting our approval from the USCIS within 30 – 45 days. Another consideration is Moscow Region’s current moratorium on US adoptions. There are indications that the moratorium will be lifted within the next month or so, and there is also the chance that even with the moratorium in place, they may make exceptions for special needs children like Maria.
Please pray with us that God would work through all of these circumstances to give Maria a permanent loving home as soon as possible.