In a matter of days, we have become students of the international adoption process and are diving head first into it! Our first step was to contact the agency (in Washington State) that is handling his file. We learned that we will need Child Abuse clearances from each and every state in which we have resided since the age of 18. Because of Tom's military career, that gives him 9! Each one of these states must clear us before our home study can be completed. According to our agency, the only way this adoption will happen is if that step is complete by mid May. Apparently, that is not humanly possible (according to most) so we are racing to finish and letting God handle the obstacles that we cannot. Since Friday, we have submitted clearance requests for 8/9 states and have agreement from at least 4 agencies to expedite our requests in light of Shen's critical time frame.
To learn more about why this deadline is so important for Junchi, please click on this link and read about age-out children in China. It will give you a sense of urgency for him. http://wonderfulwaitingkids.blogspot.com/p/older-child-adoption.html
Our second challenge was finding a certified social worker who was accredited for Chinese adoption and available and willing to drop everything in their world to get this done for us. We struggled for two days and with a great deal of prayer from other adoptive families, we found our local agency late yesterday and they went to work immediately. Praise God! He is already removing obstacles.
Another answer to prayer has been my colleagues at the Chamber of Commerce. They have rallied the troops and secured senatorial support from Senator DeMint's office and they are working on our behalf to remove as much red tape and delays as they can to help us reach him in time. Junchi's birthday is August 29, 2011. We MUST be in China no later than mid-August or we may be too late. Even if everything is done, and we are in country, if we get to him on his birthday or later, they will not allow us to bring him home.
We ask for your prayers daily and will update this blog with the latest progress, photos as we get them and any specific prayer needs that arise. Join us in praying for a miracle as we work to add the sweet boy to our family.
Love, Tom,Angie & Tommy