Archives for March 2010

Please Continue to Pray

Please know that your prayers are definitely making a difference! God did another miracle this last week that can only be attributed to His marvelous grace and your prayers!

Our adoption process has one unique twist that is not common to most adoptions, our adoption agency closed in December of 2009. We found out about the closing about a week before we got the news that we had been chosen to adopt Cameron. Because the agency (World Partners Adoption in Atlanta, Georgia) had walked us through the first half of the adoption, everything was good to move forward with the adoption. With the help of the previous director of WPA, we have been moving forward without problem.

Last week we discovered that the ICBF (the Colombian agency we are adopting through) needed a certified adoption agency to complete the post-adoption reporting required by the Colombian government. This newly discovered need sent me (Patrick) into a tail spin trying to find an agency that would handle this requirement. After two days of searching and contacting sixteen different agencies, we finally found a couple of agencies that were willing to help us. After evaluating the requirements of each agency and the additional cost of using a second agency ($1000+), we decided to get Bethany Christian Services, an agency out of Michigan, to help us with the necessary reporting.

We are very thankful that Bethany for their help in this matter. Just one more stressful rollor coaster ride for us. But it is just one more amazing way that God showed His mercy to us and reminded us that He is still in control. Thank you for your continued prayers.

So, where do things stand? Well, we are still waiting for our 171H approval form from the USCIS office in Atlanta. Once we have that we should get our invitation to travel. Then we can get our travel visas which will be from Chicago or Miami. After that, we should be off to Colombia. It is unlikely that we will have everything finished by April 9th, but we are still praying that it might happen.

Here is the updated prayer list:

  • Pray that we get our 171H approval from the USCIS office.
  • Pray that the approval gets filed at the US Embassy in Colombia quickly.
  • Pray that we get our invitation to travel quickly.
  • Pray that we can get our travel visas without any problems.
  • Pray for Cameron, that he will be with us soon.

Thanks again for your continued support and prayers.

Awaiting His Coming,
Patrick & Mary Ann Mulvehill

The Peaks and Valleys of Adoption

Everything is still on track, but we really need your prayers. We found out today that everything is waiting on the I-171H approval form that will come from the US Citizenship and Immigration Services office in Atlanta. According to the lawyer in Bogota, we need this piece of paper before we can travel to Colombia. The good news is, we are almost finished with the administrative portion of the process! They just need that final piece before they can offer the official invitation to travel.

We need a miracle. We need to get our approval soon. I have had personal contact with an officer of the USCIS and he has been very responsive to my requests for expedition. We are praying that this is a good sign and that everything will go quickly once they get our FBI clearance (which should arrive this week if all goes well). Please pray that everything goes smoothly and quickly with this process. If there are delays, it could delay our travel dates.

There is no question that this adoption process has been the most emotionally, spiritually, and even physically difficult process that we have every experienced. Both Mary Ann and I have lost family members to disease and death, experienced broken families as children, gone through the spiritual struggles of trying to know God’s will, and dealt with the pain and uncertainty of infertility, but I do not think there is anything like the peaks and valleys of the adoption process. It is like going through all of these things at once. Some days the news is good and you want to celebrate and some days think that maybe it is never going to happen. It is like having this promise from God, but it just never seems to come to pass. We have experienced at least two possible adoption situations that didn’t work out and years of failed infertility treatments. Sometimes the ups and downs of this roller coaster ride just seem like too much to handle.

abrahamAbraham had a promise from God, “I will make you a great nation.” But he went for years without seeing how God would fulfill that promise. Then when He did, God commanded him to kill the son that He had given him. I can’t imagine the full extent of the peaks and valleys Abraham experienced, but I am beginning to get the idea. We have prayed for a child for 14 years (as long as we have been married). God is giving us the desire of our hearts, but it is definitely coming in His time and according to His plan. We trust Him. We know He knows what is best for us.

The important thing is, whether Cameron is in our arms on April 13th or a week or two later, he is still going to be there. God provided a sacrifice for Abraham, He will provide our heart’s desire…in His time.

Thank you for your prayers and continued support. Please continue to pray for God to keep Cameron safe until he is in our arms.

Awaiting His Coming,
Patrick & Mary Ann Mulvehill

We Got Our Travel Dates!

suitcaseWell, the news of our travel dates has come with mixed emotions. Of course, we are thrilled to finally know when we will be leaving, but we had hoped to be with Cameron before his first birthday (March 31st). As it stands now, we will be flying to Bogota on April 9th and meeting Cameron for the first time on April 13th (our 14th year anniversary)!

colombia_bogotaAs with every step in this process, this news also came with a few new twists. The first is the need to have our USCIS (United States Citizenship and Immigration Services) approval before we travel. This is the document that allows us to bring Cameron back into the United Status and gives him his citizenship. We just overnighted the last piece of paperwork to them on Wednesday and they should be getting our FBI clearance by the end of next week. Our delayed travel date is giving them a little over 3 weeks to approve our application. I am still a little nervous about this process. We have e-mailed the USCIS office in Atlanta and are praying that they will help us by expediting the approval. Please pray with us that this comes quickly.

We knew that we would need visas to travel, however, we weren’t aware of the process that was required to secure the visas needed for adoption. It looks like we will be adding a trip to Miami, Florida to our list of things to do in order to get our travel visas. According to everything we have read, you have to apply for this special visa in person and you have to have already purchased your round trip plane tickets. We are still looking into it, so keep this process in your prayers. The good news is that the Colombian Consulate website says that the visa will only take 4 business days to process.

Our Current Needs:

  1. Our USCIS application gets approved in time for us to leave.
  2. We are able to find the best flights at the best price.
  3. We can get our travel visas without any problems
  4. We are able to raise the remaining travel funds (plus the additional Miami trip funds if needed)
  5. Prayer for Cameron, that God will bless him and keep him safe.
  6. Prayer for his foster family, that God would bless them for their loving care.

Thank you for all of your continued prayer and support.

Awaiting His Coming,
Patrick & Mary Ann Mulvehill

Yard Sale Success

DSC_0002-2Well, we have done a number of yard sales in our day, but today’s sale tops them all. We began the day with lots and lots of stuff from our own home as well as a ton of things from the donations given by family and friends. We ended the day with $1600 dollars toward our travel expenses to Colombia! We are completely overwhelmed by the generosity of our community who were willing to shop and purchase items from the sale, not to mention the extra amounts that were donated above and beyond the sale prices. We serve a great God and are proud to live in a community where people see the importance of supporting your neighbors. Thank you to everyone who dropped by, shopped, and purchased at the sale.

We want to say a special thanks to everyone that donated items to the sale. We couldn’t have done it without your help.

Also we want to say a special thanks to the Fahning’s for their help during the day of the sale, and for helping with the clean up.

DSC_0004And we really couldn’t have made it through the day had it not been for the Maner family. They showed up to help me at 5 AM in the morning and stayed all through the day and for the clean up process! There is no question that Billy was our “yard sale diva” (for you Clean House watchers, you know this is a good thing)! He could sell just about anything at a great price! It was amazing to watch him work. The way he talked about some of the stuff, he had me wanting to buy it! We appreciate their help very much!

The proceeds from the sale have put us closer to raising the complete budget for the finalization of the adoption. We are looking forward to posting our travel date soon. We will never be able to say thank you enough to all of those that have had a part in this process.


Awaiting His Coming,
Patrick & Mary Ann Mulvehill