Thanks to our family/travel coordinator and your countless prayers, we were able to collect and send all the documents requested by USCIS. Our case officer has received them, and we expect our case to be sent on to the US Embassy in Addis Ababa where they will begin the I-604 child investigation. This investigation is pretty much the same process our case just went through via USCIS. It is conducted by an office of the US Embassy which has Amharic speaking staff. They review the Amharic translations of all the documents and will then schedule a closest living relative interview. Considering our children's age and history, along with the number of solid witnesses who have verified I&I's orphan status, we feel confident that their status will be clearly proven. Embassy will then issue their approval to USCIS, and USCIS will finally issue the coveted PAIR approval letter. We'll have that letter couriered back to Addis Ababa to the Ethiopian Ministry of Women, Children, and Youth Affairs. Upon receiving the PAIR letter, MOWCYA will schedule an adoption court date. Once that date is scheduled, we'll book a flight and likely fly out one month later. As we wait, we pray that our file will be handled with order, care, and compassion and for the birth relative's travel to be arranged quickly and safely.
I do need to share a correction to my last post: I was mistaken in interpreting part of the USCIS data. The reference USCIS lists as Embassy is not the Embassy appointment to issue VISAs as I had understood. It's the time frame for a case to be sent to Embassy to begin the I-604 investigation.
Well, the good news is that our case has been moving along quite nicely. The blow was that we clearly won't be home by June. It's more realistic that our Ethiopian Court date will be scheduled for June. An Embassy appointment for VISAs would be scheduled approximately 4-8 weeks after we clear court.
The whole process makes my head spin at times!
Thanks for your patience, dear Friends. We love you and are so blessed by your company as we walk this home stretch. XO